11 May 2006

Teaching Poetry: Lesson 7 - The Final Lesson

Today marked my last day in Mrs. Hansen's fourth grade class. I warmed when I saw more than a few of the students posture disappointed to receive the news.

I kept it simple this time around. I compiled a list of poetry Websites the students could visit to learn more about writing, and others that listed places to submit their poems. After handing out the list, I opened the floor for the students to express things they wished we would have spent more time on. A good many wanted more time to work with specific forms, like haikus and sonnets. Their feedback provided me with an eye toward any future poetry lessons I may lead.

After discussing their experience with my lessons, I had them all spend ten minutes writing in whatever form they wished, just as long as they wrote for ten solid minutes. I actually gave them fifteen.

Then we had our own mini open-mic. I chose the kid who hammed it up the most as the em cee, but he surprisingly clammed up. Nonetheless, the kids read some terrific poems, many of which they wrote using the lightning sonnet exercise we learned a few lessons before. We had just enough time for each student to read one poem each.

Thus ends my lessons. I plan on making a chapbook from their work, with hopes of handing each of them a copy to pass around and sign, much like a yearbook. As for future lessons, only the future will tell. Hopefully, these documented lessons will help you in teaching your own classes, writing your own poems, or in wondering how the school district could allow a nut like me to sit in the teacher's seat.

1 comment:

SM Smith said...

Kyle, Thanks for the email awhile back. Hope I fixed things correctly and that all is well with you. Glad your "teaching poetry" ended well. : )