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Lesson Plan

Letter Poems Deliver: Experimenting with Line Breaks in Poetry Writing

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Letter Poems Deliver: Experimenting with Line Breaks in Poetry Writing

Grades 3 – 5
Lesson Plan Type Standard Lesson
Estimated Time Two 40-minute sessions
Lesson Author

Julie Wollman, Ph.D.

Julie Wollman, Ph.D.

Worcester, Massachusetts

Publisher

National Council of Teachers of English

 

Materials and Technology

Student Interactives

Printouts

Preparation

 

MATERIALS AND TECHNOLOGY

  • William Carlos Williams’s “This is Just to Say” written on chart paper in letter form (with a salutation added) and on a separate piece of chart paper as a poem

  • Copies for each student of the poem “Dear Grandma” written as a letter and on a separate piece of paper as a poem. Alternatively,  you can select a similar poem from the The Academy of American Poets Website, from Chapter 2 of  Getting the Knack: 20 Poetry Writing Exercises (Dunning and Stafford 1992), or use a letter poem you have written to model your literacy for students.

  • Chart paper or board space for writing ideas

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STUDENT INTERACTIVES

Letter Poem Creator

Grades   3 – 12  |  Student Interactive  |  Writing Poetry

Letter Poem Creator

The Letter Poem Creator provides an online model for the thought process involved in creating poems based upon a letter; then, students are invited to experiment with letter poems independently.

 

Line Break Explorer

Grades   3 – 8  |  Student Interactive  |  Writing Poetry

Line Break Explorer

The interactive explores the ways that poets choose line breaks in their writing. After viewing the demonstration, students are invited to experiment with line breaks themselves.

 

Venn Diagram

Grades   K – 12  |  Student Interactive  |  Organizing & Summarizing

Venn Diagram

This interactive tool allows students to create Venn diagrams that contain two or three overlapping circles, enabling them to organize their information logically.

 

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PRINTOUTS

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PREPARATION

  • This lesson assumes that students have already been introduced to poetry. The lesson What Makes Poetry? Exploring Line Breaks is a good precursor to this lesson.

  • Browse, select, and gather resources, making copies of “Dear Grandma” (or an alternative) in letter and poem forms.

  • Write “This is Just to Say,” in letter and poem forms, on chart paper.

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