New Thematic Educator Guide: Teaching Poetry

By Kaitlyn Spotts | June 1 2023 | GeneralEnglish Language Arts

In her 2021 TED-Ed student talk, poet Amanda Gorman said, “Poetry has never been the language of barriers. It’s always been the language of bridges.” With the current emphasis on culturally responsive, student-centered education and social emotional learning in schools, the bridge-building power of poetry is especially important. Poetry plays a significant role in teaching elementary children to make meaning, express emotion, and connect to culture, all while appreciating the rhythm and rhyme of the written and spoken word.

The activities in the Elementary School Guide on Teaching Poetry are adaptable for kindergarten through fifth grade and focus on the following line of inquiry: Why do poets write poems? How can poetry help us understand ourselves and the world around us?

Teachers can choose one or any combination of titles and strategies in the guide for whole-class instruction, small groups, or independent practice as they work to build a classroom culture where children are inspired to read, write, and reflect on the power of poetry.

Download the free guides for elementary school, middle school, and high school.

Stitchin' and Pullin'
A Gee's Bend Quilt
This collection of poems that tells story of the quilt-making community in Gee's Bend, Alabama is now available in Dragonfly paperback.
$8.99 US
Oct 04, 2016
48 Pages
Dragonfly Books

A World Full of Poems
A gorgeously illustrated introduction to poetry for children, featuring poems about everything from science, sports, and space, to friendship, family, and feelings.
$19.99 US
Oct 06, 2020
204 Pages
DK Children

Blue Sky White Stars
A poetic and inspiring tribute to the beauty and wonder of America's history, landscape, and symbols, illustrated by acclaimed artist Kadir Nelson.
$18.99 US
Jun 13, 2017
40 Pages
Dial Books

A Place to Start a Family
Poems About Creatures That Build
A poetry collection introducing animal architects that build remarkable structures in order to attract a mate and have babies.
$9.99 US
Jul 30, 2019
32 Pages