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Past Midnight

Shirl McPhillips shares a poem she’s written about her grandmother Eva, and the fragments of memory that inspired it.

The Power of Similes

If you want stronger poetry from students, a good starting point might be to explore how to write a powerful simile. Gretchen Schroeder explains how she helps her high school students play with and create better similes.

Poetry Connections

Poetry writing always has the potential to spark some magic in students. Christy Rush-Levine finds this magic requires a few conditions to be in place first in her middle school classroom.

The Third (or More) Time Is the Charm

Gretchen Schroeder finds helping her students see the value in rereading poems is all about helping them pay close attention to imagery.

Pick a Poem

David Pittman delights in a student’s enthusiasm for poetry, leading him to reflect on how teachers often need to overcome their own negative history with poems to spark student love of the genre.

A Poem About Lost Friendship: Conferring with Estelle

Estelle shares a poem she has written about lost friendship with her teacher, Katherine Sokolowski. She captures the fickle nature of fifth-grade relationships among girls. Katherine connects the cadence of the writing to the style of The Crossover, and helps Estelle find possibilities for more writing.

Message from the Moon

Shirl McPhillips crafts a message from the moon about tone in poetry and school in her latest poem and companion essay.

Spoken Word Poetry

Gretchen Schroeder uses online videos as resources to teach her high school students to appreciate spoken-word poetry and write their own.

Object Poetry Lesson in Second Grade

Linda Karamatic explores poetry with her second graders. She displays poems students have written and teaches them about fresh language using a poem about a pencil sharpener.

Dabbling: Reviving a Focus on Play

Mary Lee Hahn finds a focus on play and "dabbling" renews student writers during a unit on narrative nonfiction.

News from the Interior

Shirl McPhillips shares a new poem, as well as some practical tips on moving from random observations to vivid details to poetry.

Easing into Writing Poetry

Tara Smith describes how she eases her sixth-grade students into writing poetry through careful selection and analysis of mentor poems.

Beyond the Acrostic Poem

Megan Skogstad finds the right mentor texts can help her fourth graders move beyond acrostic poems.

“Old Age Sticks”: Choral Reading and Reflection

Christy Rush-Levine leads her eighth graders in a choral reading and analysis of the E. E. Cummings poem "Old Age Sticks." This is the second video in a two-part series.

Poetry Read-Alouds During Transitions

Mandy Robek finds quick poetry read-alouds are a great way to transition between activities in her second-grade classroom and build a love of poems.

Life in a Single Breath

Shirl McPhillips says hello to autumn and explores the power of haiku.

Random Poetry

Gretchen Schroeder finds creative ways to pique interest in poetry in her high school classroom.

Not Just in April: Poetry All Year Long

Tara Smith finds that the 20 minutes she spends on poetry reading, analysis, and response in her sixth-grade classroom each week pay dividends all year long.

Poetry Through Song

Jennifer Schwanke finds song lyrics are one way for students to see the power of poems.

“Old Age Sticks”: Poetry Analysis in Eighth Grade

Christy Rush-Levine leads her middle school students in a choral reading and analysis of "Old Age Sticks" by E.E. Cummings. This is the first installment in a two-part series.

Teaching Punctuation with Poetry

Melanie Meehan discovers that the spare form of poetry is especially useful for teaching conventions.

Weaving in Poetry

Gigi McAllister shares suggestions for infusing poetry throughout classrooms and the literacy curriculum all year long.

The Case for the Sonnet

Gretchen Schroeder makes a case for teaching the sonnet to teenagers in the age of texts and Twitter.

Message from Old Crow

The end of winter is upon us! Shirl McPhillips celebrates with a poem about an old crow and reflections on revising poems over time.

Tests of Time

This vivid new poem from Shirley McPhillips, explores the disconnect between exams and life.

Shaking Off the Village

Shirl McPhillips writes of the glories of summer walks for teachers in her latest poem and reflection.
 

Closing Out the Year with “Where I’m From”

Jillian Heise shares a marvelous poetry writing activity for students who are transitioning from elementary to middle school, or middle to high school.

A Spring Villanelle

Shirl McPhillips highlights the pleasures and challenges of using a strict poetic form.

One Tool, Many Uses: Poetry Notebooks

Shari Frost explains how teachers get creative with poetry notebooks.

Blackout Poems and Paint-Chip Haiku: Two Fun Ways into Poetry with Adolescents

Jillian Heise uses the lowly paint-chip board to inspire poetry in her middle school students.

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