Inspired by the success of our popular syndicated series Poem-a-Day, we’re pleased to present Teach This Poem, winner of the 2018 Innovations in Reading Prize given by the National Book Foundation.
Produced for K-12 educators, Teach This Poem features one poem a week, accompanied by interdisciplinary primary sources and activities designed to help teachers quickly and easily bring poetry into the classroom. The series is produced with the assistance of Curriculum Consultant Ansley Moon and was developed with Educator in Residence Dr. Madeleine Fuchs Holzer who continues to provide oversight and guidance. Teach This Poem is available for free via email.
Watch a video about Teach This Poem and teaching with primary sources with Dr. Holzer and our Education Ambassador Richard Blanco.
Read a short essay that more fully describes the framework upon which Teach This Poem is based.
See our suggestions to help you adapt Teach This Poem for remote or blended learning.
Read more about Teach This Poem’s impact.
Teach This Poem, though developed with a classroom in mind, can be easily adapted for remote-learning, hybrid-learning models, or in-person classes. Please see our suggestions for how to adapt this lesson for remote or blended learning. We have also noted suggestions when applicable and will continue to add to these suggestions online.
Look closely at the image of a sunset.
The following activities and questions are designed to help your students use their noticing skills to move through the poem and develop their thinking skills so they understand its meaning with confidence, using what they’ve noticed as evidence for their interpretations. Read more about the framework upon which these activities are based.
From poets.org on the history of the pastoral tradition: “The pastoral tradition can be traced back to Hesiod, a Greek oral poet active between 750 and 650 BC, roughly the same time as Homer. His most famous poem, Works and Days, is part farmer’s almanac and part didactic exploration of the nature of human labor.” You can read more about the history of pastoral poetry here.