6 Activities to Kick Off Poetry Month

6 Activities for Poetry Month


Espresso Shot: 6 Activities to Kick Off Poetry Month

It's National Poetry Month and we here at the Coffee Shop would love to share some of our favorite activities that you can incorporate into your poetry unit or use throughout the month. 

Tracee Orman: I love to show students that poetry is not and should not be as painful and daunting as they may think. I start out by using short, easy-to-read poems that students can digest easily. (Poems by William Carlos Williams, Gwendolyn Brooks, and Carl Sandburg are favorites.) Then we slowly work up to more complex poems. Along the way I have them try out writing parody poems in the same format as the poems we read. Incorporating the reading and writing breaks up the unit and makes it more fun. You can download a guided presentation with handouts here: Guided Poetry Presentation & Handouts

Nouvelle ELA: I LOVE poetry and I really look forward to celebrating it in April, but I also have a lot of students out on vacation or band trips or whatnot. Here is an Independent Poetry Analysis that you can send home with kids or use as a sub plan. It’s available in paper and digital, so you can even use it for hybrid and remote learning.

Presto Plans: One of my favorite ways to have students respond to poetry is with a Poetry One-Pager. This activity gets students to present their interpretation of a poem onto a single piece of paper using both text and illustrations. At the heart of this artistic exercise are the elements of strong literary analysis. The result is a colorful, enlightening product that will give you further insight into your students’ perception of any given poem.  I always provide a framework and templates for those students who need extra support, but also give more freedom to those who are stronger with poetry analysis.  You can learn all about how I approach poetry one pagers by clicking here

The Daring English Teacher: I love teaching poetry, but I find that sometimes students (and teachers) can be a little intimidated by words in verse. That is why I love my Sticky Note Poetry Analysis teaching resource. Not only is this unit engaging and hands-on because it incorporates sticky notes, but it is also a fool-proof way to teach poetry! This poetry unit makes teaching poetry a breeze! It includes step-by-step analysis instruction and multiple activities that can be used with any poem.

Room 213

Students often need a little more nudging when it comes to poetry, but I find that once you get them engaged, they actually enjoy it. So, I’ve come up with quite a few ways to lead them into it, including poetry bingo, scavenger hunts, and challenges. You can read more about these on my blog post, 5 Ways to Make Poetry Fun and Accessible.

Addie WilliamsToo often students (and teachers) are intimidated by a poetry unit, but I think it’s the perfect time to have fun with language and words.  One of the most effective ways I’ve found to start off with poetry is to have students write a poem all about their pet peeve.  It’s fun, non-threatening, and is sure to get students talking!  Here’s a link to the Pet Peeve Poetry activity to get started right away… everything is included. I love to read what they come up with and students love to share their pet peeves with each other. 

We hope you have a wonderful time celebrating Poetry Month with your students! Share your favorite activities with us on social media! Find us on Facebook and Instagram.

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