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Home Classroom Resources Lesson Plans

Lesson Plan

Compiling Poetry Collections and a Working Definition of Poetry

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Compiling Poetry Collections and a Working Definition of Poetry

Grades 3 – 5
Lesson Plan Type Unit
Estimated Time Eight 50-minute sessions
Lesson Author

Mary Osborne

Ozona, Florida


National Council of Teachers of English


Materials and Technology






  • Overhead or LCD projector

  • Transparencies/copies of poems used for instruction

  • General classroom supplies (chalkboard, chart paper, markers, etc)

  • Student writing notebooks and folders

  • Blank composition books

  • A computer with Internet access

  • A wide variety of poetry books to be used for instruction and student exploration

  • Examples of themed poetry collections or anthologies (e.g., Toasting Marshmallows: Camping Poems by Kristine O'Connell George)

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Poetry Collection Checklist

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  • Choose the poetic forms that you'll focus on in this lesson (e.g., concrete/shape poetry, haiku, two-voice, cinquain, free-verse). Five forms work well. See The Children's Poetry Archive and Links to Other Forms of Poetry and Elements of Poetry for additional options and materials.

  • Familiarize yourself with the elements of poetry with any of these resources: Poetry Box Rules; Elements of Poetry; and Riddle Poem Features.

  • Make copies of the poems that you will be using to teach the forms of poetry and craft elements of poetry for students.

  • Arrange for students to have their writing notebooks and folders, and blank composition books, which will be used to compile their poetry collections and definitions.

  • The forms of poetry and elements of poetry in this lesson are simply recommendations. Feel free to customize the forms and craft elements for your own needs.

  • Make a copy of the Poetry Collection Checklist for each student.

  • If desired, test the Poetry Collection Checklist Chart on your computers to familiarize yourself with the tools and ensure that you have the Flash plug-in installed. You can download the plug-in from the technical support page.

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