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Poetry All Around
Content Topic:
Poetry, writing process, illustration, publishing
4th grade classes will learn to read poetry and each student will write his or her own poem with the help of a visiting poet. Students illustrate their poems in art class and then record their poem using VoiceThread in the library. Poems will be posted and shared on a class wiki so students can comment on poems written by their classmates.
Collaboration Potential:
Visiting poet, 4th Grade classroom/ELA teacher (s), art teacher
Total Estimated Time:
1 month
Suggested Number Of Sessions:
Variety of poetry books for students to explore
Instruction / Activities:

Days 1-6

Direct Instruction

Visiting poet/teaching artist visits class to teach students how to read and interpret poetry, how to use the writing process, and how to write their own poetry.  If a visiting poet or teaching artist is not available or possible, these lessons can be taught by the classroom or English Language Arts teacher.  Each student will have produced and chosen at least one poem to work with for the following project.  During library visits, instruction will include exposure to poetry books and booktalks and students will be required to check out at least one poetry book at book exchange time.


Day 7

Independent practice:

Students will illustrate their chosen poem in Art class using water colors and crayons.  TL will scan final art products into digital file to be uploaded to VoiceThread program.


Day 8

Modeling and guided practice:

Ahead of time, TL will create a wiki and assign usernames and passwords for students and adults.  The TL will give students a brief lesson, modeling how to use the class wiki. TL will show students a wiki from the previous year, review how to log in, navigate from one page to another, and edit.  TL will hand logins and passwords to each student. Each student will go to a computer and log on, click on their pages and type name & room number.  TL will model how to type poem on wiki page and demonstrate how to change font, text color, etc.  Students will type their poems and add them to the wiki. After poems have been typed, TL demonstrates how to perform a spell check.


Direct instruction:

TL will show students a few VoiceThread clips from the website. The class will discuss what they like and don’t like about them. What was special about the ones they really liked? (People spoke in a loud, clear voice, etc.)  Give each student a copy of their poem to practice reading at home.


Day 9

Modeling and guided practice:

Students will record their poems using VoiceThread.  Once recordings are completed, the Voicethread will be uploaded to the class wiki.


Day 10

Modeling and guided practice:

TL will model how to comment on someone else's work using VoiceThread and discuss commenting on others' work appropriately.  TL selects a poem, reads it aloud, and asks for positive comments about that poem. A discussion of what is and is not appropriate should take place. Then TL demonstrates how to add a comment to someone else’s work, emphasizing the fact that as the wiki administrator, the teacher librarian will know who writes which comment.


Independent practice:

Students will read poems written by 4th grade students (working on the same project) from other classes and add comments to their poetry VoiceThreads.



Day 11

Independent practice:

Using the class wiki, students will answer questions about their own poems (questions posed on the wiki by the visiting poet/teaching artist or classroom teacher).  Students will continue to read poems written by their 4th grade classmates and will write comments on them in the comment section of the class wiki.


Day 12

Modeling and guided practice:

Students will choose either Kidspiration or Wordle to further illustrate their poems.  The teacher librarian will give brief tutorials about how to use these tools and students will be given time to explore and then create their own Kidspiration and/or Wordle illustrations.  Creations will be uploaded to the class wiki.



Sharing and reflection:

Students will celebrate by viewing their class (and other 4th grade class's) VoiceThreads.  Students will write an informal reflection on the Poetry All Around project and voluntarily share if they choose.

Georgia Popoff (teaching artist), Carol Iwanicki, Carolyn Bonner, Beth Peppone (4th grade teachers); Pat Rudney (Art teacher); Denice Buchanan (SU fieldwork student)
Print this Lesson Plan
Presented By: Bonnie French
Collaborative: Georgia Popoff (teaching artist), Carol Iwanicki, Carolyn Bonner, Beth Peppone (4th grade teachers); Pat Rudney (Art teacher); Denice Buchanan (SU fieldwork student)
Website by Data Momentum, Inc.