Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Poetry, High School, and TeachersPayTeachers . . . Teaching Ideas for ALL

So glad to have you all back at the PerfettoWritingRoom(c)

April is National Poetry Month! 
In NJ ninth graders learn genre, tenth graders American literature, and eleventh learn British literature. Good teachers are always freshening their material, looking for ways to incorporate new material or techniques into their arsenal.

So let's just go there and talk about TeachersPayTeachers and the wonderful poetry items available for secondary students and beyond. Despite the fact that TpT is wonderfully successful as a gathering place for teachers who want free and reasonably priced and completely fascinating items for pre-K, homeschool, and kindergarten through grades 8, more and more teachers are realizing the value of TpT as an electronic mall for secondary and yes, even higher ed materials.

                       Characterization Master Course - No Upper Age Limit                      
    Characterization Master Course - No Upper Age Limit            The Sonnet: A History

These are only two of the amazing products offered by my store, though other stores, like Literary Sheri, Room 213, Dianne Mason, Donald's English Classroom, Ellen Weber, and so many others have wonderful products, waiting to be used, nearly prep-free.

Whether you want to study the Transcendentalists, the Beats, the Romantics, have students write their own, cut up cereal boxes and do a little FOUND poetry, do a little interdisciplinary poetry and make portfolios of their work and move towards publication...there is no time like RIGHT NOW, in the spring, when let's face it, we all know that spring is here. Summer is coming, and the students, the teachers, heck, even the principal is looking out the window, thinking, "Oh gosh, pretty soon, I'll have off."

Poetry is wonderful because it underscores the wonder and beauty of the season. Poetry is SNEAKY. Yes, call us dishonest, but teachers do anything to create learning opportunities, and poetry is one of those great deceivers. 

Poems seem small, compact....EASY. But really, there is:

rhyme scheme 
theme - which sometimes can be heavy, man!
sound devices
(unless you've got free verse!)
close reading opportunities
analytical writing opportunities
performance opportunities! (how fun....)
the chance to mix media (add sketches, photos, record your voice reading it, make a short movie that
                                           represents the poem, etc.).

So what SEEMS EASY ends up being the most productive unit yet!!!
Poetry is up everyone's alley up every dog's tree (pardon the cliches). 

Don't let April and Spring and Poetry slip by! Make the most of it. Come up with a great DIY lesson of your own. Or by all means, avail yourself of some small free lessons on TpT, or the paid products at my store, or the really great sellers mentioned above. 

Do You Want to Take Part?

Do you make wonderful lessons already?
Or, are you a writer or other professional who can contribute instructionals?
Do you enjoy sharing your ideas with others?
Would you like to make extra money off your wonderful ideas?
. . . help other teachers or writers?
. . . eventually work from home?

While I can't promise the last one, many teachers and people from other walks of life have had success creating engaging, helpful and beautiful lessons that other teachers, homeschoolers, or just folks in need use, want and love. I really feel I have been blessed by discovering TpT. Check out if it is for you.


  1. Gina,
    Awesome idea! Following your blog.

  2. Great community builders here that could rejuvenate secondary schools Gina! Thanks for your initiative. This blog promises to be a game-changer! Go secondary! Best, Ellen