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Bringing Poetry to the Classroom, Grades K-5

April Is National Poetry Month

Found In: language arts,preK-2, 3-5

Lesson Plans

A Light in the Attic
Students in grades K-2 listen to a selection of Shel Silverstein’s poems and complete a character map and describe the tone of the poems. (Site registration is required but free – and worth it.)

Bringing the Rain to Kapiti Plain by Verna Aardema
Students in grades K-2 respond to a reading of Bringing the Rain to Kapiti Plain. (Site registration is required but free – and worth it.)

A Bear of a Poem: Composing and Performing Found Poetry
Students in grades K-2 select words and phrases to create a collective class poem that they then turn into a performance.

In Daddy’s Arms I Am Tall: African Americans Celebrating Fathers
Students in grades 3-5 listen to poems from In Daddy’s Arms I Am Tall and identify the common theme and write a response to one poem. (Site registration is required but free – and worth it.)


National Poetry Month Activities
Teachers share ideas for exploring and enjoying poetry in the K-8 classroom.

Poetry Read-a-Thon
Students in grades K-12 choose poems to read and then write prose “responses” to the poems they read. Students keep a reading log and respond to elements of the poem in 75-100 words.

Poem in Your Pocket
Teachers and students in grades K-12 can celebrate National Poem In Your Pocket Day on Thursday, April 24, 2014. Select a poem you love during National Poetry Month then carry it with you to share with co-workers, family, and friends.

Ways to Celebrate National Poetry Month With The New York Times
A selection of activities for K-12 students.

Background Resources

National Poetry Month (Reading Rockets)
Learn more about well-loved children’s poets with video interviews, and discover new authors, books and anthologies for K-5.

Celebrate National Poetry Month (Scholastic)
Webcasts, lessons, poetry prompts from well-known poets help inspire your young poets, for K-12.

April is National Poetry Month! (ReadWriteThink)
K-12 lesson plans and activities.

Poetry (National Council of Teachers of English)
K-12 lessons and exercises, themed journals, and galleries of writing.

Find Poetry (
Browse poems in archive by title, first line, author last name or by occasion, for K-12.

Poems & Poets (Poetry Foundation)
A multi-approach search tool for poetry, for K-12.

Children’s Poetry (Poetry Foundation)

National Poetry Month: Celebrating World Poetry
Lessons and websites covering different poetic forms developed across time and around the world, for K-12.


Classical Baby (I'm Grown Up Now): The Poetry Show: Video


Audio & Podcasts (Poetry Foundation)
Readings of poems and interviews with poets.


last updated: March 17, 2015



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Join the NEA Foundation's National Poetry Month Challenge! Inspired by a Maryland high school student: how educators, students, and poetry-lovers can celebrate the love of poetry.


Michael Rosen is a website dedicated to imparting the love of poetry to your K-12 learners. Use these resources for teachers, news, videos and podcasts for adults and much more.