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March 21

Today is World Poetry Day.

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Today is World Poetry Day.

Grades 3 – 12
Calendar Activity Type Holiday & School Celebration

 

EVENT DESCRIPTION

 

 

Believed to have its origin in the 1930s, World Poetry Day is now celebrated in hundreds of countries around the world. This day provides a perfect opportunity to examine poets and their craft in the classroom. In 1999, UNESCO (the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization) also designated March 21 as World Poetry Day.

CLASSROOM ACTIVITY

 

 

"Introduction to Poetry" by Billy Collins provides a wonderful place to begin a discussion on how readers approach a poem. Ask students to skim quickly through the poem and write their initial responses in their journals or on paper. What words and images stand out for them? What is their emotional reaction to the poem (e.g., surprise, dismay, anger)? Ask students to share their responses with the class. Then have students read the poem a second time, this time more slowly and carefully, taking note of any figurative language (e.g., simile, metaphor, hyperbole) they encounter. What do they think Collins is saying about the study of poetry? According to Collins, what is the real goal of reading poetry?

Ask students to think about a favorite poem and imagine the perfect way to read it. Where would they be when they read it? Would they read it fast or slow? Out loud or to themselves? Have them compose their own poem about reading poetry. Students can use tools provided by ReadWriteThink to create Acrostic Poems, Diamante Poems, Letter Poems, or Theme Poems.

WEBSITES

 

 
  • Poets.org

    This website includes the work of hundreds of poets and more than 1400 poems. Included are poet biographies, selected works, and a collection of poems in audio format.

  • Poetry 180: A Poem a Day for American High Schools

    From the Library of Congress, this site features a year's worth of poetry for high school students. Beginning with Billy Collins' "Introduction to Poetry," the poems are meant to be read aloud, and enjoyed by the entire school community.

  • Poetry Daily

    Though not all poems are appropriate for younger readers, you can search the archives to find a full year of poems.

RELATED RESOURCES

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Grades   6 – 8  |  Lesson Plan  |  Standard Lesson

What is Poetry? Contrasting Poetry and Prose

Students often find poetry frustrating and meaningless. By helping students think critically about the differences between poetry and prose, this introduction sets the stage for different strategies for comprehending poetic texts.

 

Grades   4 – 8  |  Lesson Plan  |  Standard Lesson

Talking Poetry with Blabberize

Students will be motivated to share their poetry through an online tool the features recording and animation.

 

Grades   K – 2  |  Lesson Plan  |  Standard Lesson

Poetry Portfolios: Using Poetry to Teach Reading

Teach your students about sentence structure, rhyming words, sight words, vocabulary, and print concepts using a weekly poem.

 

Grades   3 – 5  |  Lesson Plan  |  Unit

Creating Classroom Community by Crafting Themed Poetry Collections

Students create poetry collections with the theme of "getting to know each other." They study and then write a variety of forms of poetry to include in their collections.

 

Grades   6 – 8  |  Lesson Plan  |  Standard Lesson

Weaving the Threads: Integrating Poetry Annotation and Web Technology

Students read a poem by a Native American, explore Native American culture and then create a Website that explains words and phrases from the poem.

 

Grades   9 – 12  |  Lesson Plan  |  Standard Lesson

Poetry: Sound and Sense

Students' groans about studying poetry may disappear with this lesson in which students read poetry from various writers and use these poems to examine the sounds and sense of language.