Showing posts with label National Poetry Month. Show all posts
Showing posts with label National Poetry Month. Show all posts

Tuesday, April 6, 2021

Activities for National Poetry Month

April is National Poetry Month. I forgot all about it until this morning when I looked at my video about using Google Jamboard to create magnetic poetry activities. That's just one of many resources for National Poetry Month that I have in my archive of resources. Here's a handful of my favorite activities and resources for National Poetry Month. 

Verse by Verse is an experimental AI project from Google. Verse by Verse lets you compose poems by combining lines from the works of famous poets. In other words, it's a poetry remix tool. To use it you simply visit the site and select three poets to inspire you. Then you write your own first line of a poem. Once you've written a line of your own Verse by Verse will suggest three lines from each of the three poets you originally selected. You can then include those lines in your new poem. Finished poems can be downloaded as text overlaid on an background image. 

Read Write Think used to host a great, interactive template to help students create theme poems. Unfortunately, that template was Flash-based and it no longer works. That said, the page it was hosted on still offers more than a dozen poetry lesson for use in K-8 classrooms

Make Beliefs Comix offers more than 700 writing prompt pages. All of the pages are designed to be printed and given to students to write on. Within that collection you will find a small collection of poetry pages. All the the printable poetry prompt pages include artwork designed to spark a student's imagination. Some of the artwork is in color and some is in black and white. A bonus of the black and white artwork is that you're essentially getting a coloring page and a poetry prompt in one package.

Poetry 180 is a Library of Congress project that was created when Billy Collins was the U.S. Poet Laureate. The purpose of the project is to provide high school teachers with poems for their students to read or hear throughout the school year. Collins selected the poems for Poetry 180 with high school students in mind. I didn't look at every poem in the list, but of dozen or so that I looked at, none would take more than a few minutes to read in a classroom. Speaking of reading in class, Collins encourages teachers to read the poems aloud or have students read the poems aloud. To that end, here's his advice on how to read a poem out loud.

There's a Poem for That is a series of twelve TED-Ed lessons featuring six famous works. The lessons include poems from from Frost, Shakespeare, Yeats, O'Keefe, Gibson, and Elhillo.


This post originally appeared on FreeTech4Teachers.com. If you see it elsewhere, it has been used without permission. Sites that regularly steal my (Richard Byrne's) work include CloudComputin , 711Web, and Today Headline.

Wednesday, April 3, 2019

A Poem for Every Day of National Poetry Month

Last fall I wrote about the Poetry 180 project hosted by the Library of Congress. Now that National Poetry Month is here, it's a good time to revisit the post that I wrote about Poetry 180 at the beginning of the school year.

Poetry 180 is a Library of Congress project that was created when Billy Collins was the U.S. Poet Laureate. The purpose of the project is to provide high school teachers with poems for their students to read or hear throughout the school year.

Collins selected the poems for Poetry 180 with high school students in mind. I didn't look at every poem in the list, but of dozen or so that I looked at, none would take more than a few minutes to read in a classroom. Speaking of reading in class, Collins encourages teachers to read the poems aloud or have students read the poems aloud. To that end, here's his advice on how to read a poem out loud.




Friday, March 29, 2019

There's a Poem for That! - Lessons for National Poetry Month

April is National Poetry Month. Earlier this week I shared a couple of Read Write Think poetry activities that you can use in elementary school. For those who teach middle school and high school language arts, I recommend taking a look at TED-Ed's playlist of poetry lessons.

There's a Poem for That is a series of six TED-Ed lessons featuring six famous works. In the series you will find lessons about poems from Frost, Shakespeare, Yeats, O'Keefe, Gibson, and Elhillo.

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Theme Poems and Shape Poems - Activities for Poetry Month

April is National Poetry Month here in the United States. This is a good time to remind you or introduce you to a couple of good resources from Read Write Think about poetry.

RWT's Theme Poems interactive provides students with 32 pictures to use as the basis for writing short poems. To write a poem students launch the interactive then choose a theme. Within each of the five themes students will find related images. Once they choose an image students are prompted to write the words that come to mind as they look at the image. Students then create poems from those words. The finished product can be saved as a PDF and or emailed to a teacher from the RWT site.

Shape Poems is a simple poem generation template hosted by Read Write Think. Shape Poems provides a template for writing poems in the shape of an object, about that object. Shape templates can be selected from one of four themes including sports, school, nature, and celebrations. Students then select a shape and identify words that they associate with their chosen shape. When completed, students can hear their poems read to them and or print their poems.

Applications for Education
Every RWT interactive has related lesson plans. Visit the RWT Theme Poems interactive page to find a handful of lesson plans appropriate for use in K-5.

Getting students interested in writing poems can be a difficult task. The Shape Poem generator provides a nice selection of templates that may pique students' interest in writing poetry.

Friday, April 27, 2018

From the Catbird Seat - A Poetry Podcast

Just in time for the end of National Poetry Month the Library of Congress has launched a new podcast series about poetry. The podcast is called From the Catbird Seat. The podcast will feature conversations with Rob Casper and Anne Holmes from the Poetry and Literature Center at the LOC. In the first eight episodes they'll be highlighting the work of Poet Laureates of the last five years. In the first episode they're joined by the current Poet Laureate, Tracy K. Smith. You can find the first episode right here or play the recording as embedded below.



Applications for Education
The vast majority of students aren't going to listen to this podcast in its entirety. However, you might find some good pieces of information to share with your students as conversation starters or pointers that students might use to improve their own poetry.

On a related note, the Library of Congress recently hosted a livestream with Tracy K. Smith to talk about the poetry in the age of technology. You can find the recording of that livestream right here.

Monday, April 16, 2018

2000+ Recordings of Poets and Fiction Writers Reading and Discussing Their Work

A few years ago the Library of Congress published an online collection of audio recordings of poets and fiction writers reading and discussing their works. At the time of its launch the collection contain 124 recordings. Since then the collection has grown to include more than 2,000 recordings.

The Archive of Recorded Poetry and Literature contains recordings of writers reading some of their poems and other works. Many of the recordings are long interviews with the writers during which they read some of their works. The audio can be heard on the LOC website and or embedded into blog posts as I've done here. Below you will find the recordings of Ray Bradbury and Robert Frost.







Applications for Education
The Archive of Recorded Poetry and Literature could be a good resource to use during National Poetry Month. You could have students search for and listen to recordings of the authors of a favorite poem. Or you could select a recording yourself for your students to listen to a writer's explanation of his or her thoughts on what makes a good poem.

Sunday, April 8, 2018

What Makes a Poem? - A Lesson for Poetry Month

This is National Poetry Month. "What is a poem?" might be the first question that students ask after, "why is it National Poetry Month?" The answer to that first question can be found in a TED-Ed lesson titled What Makes a Poem...a Poem?

By watching What Makes a Poem? students can learn the origins of poetry, the characteristics traditionally associated with poems, why poems don't always rhyme, and the format of a haiku. The video can be seen as embedded below.



Take a look at Read Write Think for some poetry lesson ideas that incorporate their free Word Mover app.

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Poetry Lesson Plans Incorporating Word Mover

April is National Poetry Month. This is a great time to remind you of Read Write Think's Word Mover app for iOS, Android, and web browser.

Word Mover from Read Write Think is a free app that helps students develop poems and short stories. When students open the Word Mover app they are shown a selection of words that they can drag onto a canvas to construct a poem or story. Word Mover provides students with eight canvas backgrounds on which they can construct their poems. If the word bank provided by Word Mover doesn’t offer enough words they can add their own words to the word bank.

Applications for Education
Read Write Think offers free, detailed lesson plans that incorporate the Word Mover app. There are lesson plans suitable for students in grades 3 through 12. In all cases the lesson plans incorporate students constructing some type of poem from the words displayed within the app.

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Word Mover - A Great App for National Poetry Month

April is National Poetry Month. If you have students who need a little help crafting poems, have them try Word Mover. Word Mover from Read Write Think is a free app that helps students develop poems and short stories. When students open the Word Mover app they are shown a selection of words that they can drag onto a canvas to construct a poem or story. Word Mover provides students with eight canvas backgrounds on which they can construct their poems. If the word bank provided by Word Mover doesn’t offer enough words they can add their own words to the word bank.

Applications for Education 
Word Mover could be a great app for students to use to as a story or poem starter. The app reminds me a bit of those refrigerator magnets that were popular for a while. You know, the ones that had individual words on them that you dragged around to create funny sentences. The same idea can be applied to Word Mover.

Word Mover is available for iOS, Android, and Web use.

Friday, March 31, 2017

5 Good Resources for National Poetry Month

April is Poetry Month. Whether you're trying to help students understand and interpret the meaning of poems or you're trying to help them write their own poems, the following five resources are worth exploring. (By the way, I always wonder who gets to declare the something is "national X month?" That might be a good, short research activity).

To start the month, you might consider using a relatively new TED-Ed lesson titled What Makes a Poem?


ReadWorks has a selection of famous poems available on their website. The selection is organized by grade level. As with every passage on ReadWorks, each poem is accompanied by a set of guided reading questions.

The Poetry Foundation offers some helpful resources for teachers and students. One of the resources that immediately jumped out at me when I visited the Poetry Foundation's Learning Lab was the glossary of poetry terms. Students can search the glossary alphabetically, by form & type of poem, by rhyme & meter, by schools & projects, by technique, and by theory or criticism. The Poetry Foundation offers a free mobile app for iOS and Android. The app allows users to search for poems, save poems, and share favorite poems with their friends. You can search for poems by poet, by title, or by entering a line or two of a favorite poem.

Word Mover is a free iPad app and web app from Read Write Think. The app is designed to help students develop poems and short stories. When students open the Word Mover app they are shown a selection of words that they can drag onto a canvas to construct a poem or story. Word Mover provides students with eight canvas backgrounds on which they can construct their poems. If the word bank provided by Word Mover doesn’t offer enough words they can add their own words to the word bank.

Scholastic has assembled a big list of lesson resources for teaching poetry this month. One of the resources that I really like is the Poetry Idea Engine. The Poetry Idea Engine is a simple, interactive tool that helps students create four types of poems; haiku, limerick, cinquain, and free verse. To create poem on Poetry Idea Engine students select one of the four formats. If they pick one of the first three format students will be given a short explanation of the pattern before completing the template to create their poems.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

What Makes a Poem?

April is Poetry Month. As you start to plan poetry lessons, consider that many students will first wonder, "what makes a poem?" A new TED-Ed lesson addresses that question.

In watching What Makes a Poem? students can learn the origins of poetry, the characteristics traditionally associated with poems, and the format of a haiku. The video can be seen as embedded below.


Take a look at these 7 great tools for creating your own flipped lesson with this video.

Monday, April 18, 2016

ReadWorks Offers a Nice Set of Poems and Guiding Questions for Poetry Month

ReadWorks is one of my favorite nonprofit services for teachers. ReadWorks offers hundreds of lesson plans and thousands of non-fiction and fiction passages aligned to Common Core standards. Additionally, each article is listed with a Lexile score and suggested grade level.

ReadWorks recently released a new set of poems and guided reading questions. The collection has poems appropriate for students in middle school and high school. Each poem in the collection comes with a set of questions that you can give to students to answer individually or simply use as a group discussion guide.

Applications for Education
One of the aspects of ReadWorks that I like is that lexile scores are listed for each article. ReadWorks makes it easy to find fiction and non-fiction articles that are appropriate for your students.

With a free ReadWorks account you can search for lessons and reading passages by grade level, lexile score, reading skill, subject area, and text type (fiction or non-fiction). In your ReadWorks account you can create digital binders of the lesson plans and reading passages that you want to use.

Saturday, April 9, 2016

Poetry Vocabulary Sheets Containing Examples

Disclosure: BoomWriter is an advertiser on this blog. 

April is National Poetry Month in the U.S. BoomWriter offers a good resource for those teaching poetry this month. On BoomWriter's free resources page you will find a set of poetry vocabulary sheets that you can share with your students. In those vocabulary sheets you will find lists of key terms, definitions, and examples of different types of poems.

After reviewing BoomWriter's poetry vocabulary sheets to your students you can use BoomWriter's poetry anthology activity. In the poetry anthology activity students individual write poems then work together to assemble an anthology of the poems created by their peers. Students can organize the classroom poetry anthology according to poem types and topics. As a teacher you can monitor the construction of the anthology from your teacher dashboard in BoomWriter. BoomWriter is completely free to use for this activity.

Learn more about BoomWriter in my instructional video embedded below.