Writing Poems. Teaching your students about poetry by having them write poems. Why have students write poems?. it’s fun for the students it develops their understanding of the ways in which poems work it develops their skills in using language,
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Teaching your students about poetry by having them write poems
The information that follows comes from Giggle Poetry at http://gigglepoetry.com/poetryclass.cfm
And the main writer here is the children’s poet Bruce Lansky.
The form of these poems is very familiar and therefore easy to imitate.
Tulips are red,
I dropped the radio
Into the sink.
Gerbils are brown,
Parrots are green.
The surgeons by accident
Took out your spleen.
You can start off the students with some very simple exercises:
Violets are blue. Roses are green; When we were downtown, __________.
Purpose: give students
practice with rhyme and
rhythm—and with humor
in a poem
Roses are red. Violets are blue; My cousin Margie ____________.
Then put the students to work.
Begin by making a list on the board of color words that are just one syllable long. These will fit the meter when substituted for “blue.”
Let’s make a list now.
Remind the students of the rhythm and the form: write the poem on the board.
Then let them loose. Let their imaginations run wild!
So now go ahead and write.
Always give your students a chance to read what they’ve written.
Always find things to praise in what they’ve done.
Try to find positive suggestions about improvements they might make—but state these in a cheerful, supportive way.
Named for Edmund Clerihew Bentley:
Sir James Jeans
Always says what he means:
He is really perfectly serious
About the Universe being Mysterious
English physicist and astronomer
Our art teacher, Mr. Shaw, Really knows how to draw. But his awful paintings Have caused many faintings.
The President, George W. Bush,
Gave the Taliban a vigorous push.
But he couldn’t make Osama
Cry for his mama.
Purpose: give students experience with rhymes and form in the context of a specific person
Yankee Doodle went to town
riding on a monkey. He had to take a shower quick, because he smelled so funky.
Yankee Doodle went to town riding on a rabbit. He rode around in circles 'cause it got to be a habit.
Yankee Doodle went to town
Eating tea and crumpets
Spilled the tea all down his shirt
When someone blew a trumpet.
Purpose: rhyme, rhythm, form
DUM da DUM da DUM da da,DUM da DUM da DUM da.DUM da DUM da DUM da da,da DUM da DUM da DUM da.
Here's a poem that's fairly easy to write because it's simply a collection of dreamy images woven together. All you have to do is imagine some dreamy place and write down what you'd expect to see, hear, smell, taste, and feel there. This poem is in free verse, so you don't need to worry about rhyme or rhythm.
Purpose: give students practice with imagery
and paying attention to all five senses; some
attention to a poem’s unity
After tossing and turning for what must have been an hour or so,I find myself lying on a tropical beach, the waves gently licking the sand.I gaze up at the sky and notice some pelicans soaring and swooping, looking for lunch.There's a catamaran sailing offshore, swept by the wind that is cooling my brow. etc.
It may help to have the class make a list of foods that one might eat at lunch:
salads, soups, main dishes, vegetables, desserts, drinks
Notice the rhyme: XAXA XBXB
Notice the rhythm: da da DUM da da DUM da da DUM