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 print of magnolia leaves.
The following activities and questions are designed to help your students use their noticing skills to move through the poem and develop their thinking about 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.
(Teachers, this lesson and poem deals with grief. You may want to consult with a school guidance counselor, social worker, or therapist to best discuss how to use this lesson in your school.)
“Chen writes, ‘If grief is love with nowhere to go, then / Oh, I’ve loved so immensely,’ which is a line that has stayed with me since I first read it. This reminds me that grief is held and placed; that the grievers are part of the source. The departure in our bodies shifts us anew. We become fresh and green in our sorrow and cosmic heartache.” As part of the Poetry Coalition’s programming, the Academy of American Poets asked five renowned poets to reflect on poems that helped them better understand or process grief. Read Janice Lobo Sapigao’s micro essay on “Greensickness” by Laurel Chen, and find more micro essays on grief.
Personification: the endowment of inanimate objects or abstract concepts with animate or living qualities. Read more.