I Poem Poetry Unit
Learning Context: This unit was developed for and implemented in my tenth grade communications skills class, comprised entirely of Hispanic ELL students. The focus of this course is writing, both for the tenth grade writing test as well as learning other modes of writing, including research writing.
· On day one, I began this unit by introducing the I-Poem format and by reading a poem about myself that I had written using this format.
· Then, I invited students to write their own poems about themselves in the same manner. Students then shared their poems.
· The next day, we evaluated literary models of this format. First, I read Atlantic by G.B. Karas.
· I introduced students to the idea that the I Poem is a way to tell information about all kinds of things.
· I conducted a mini-lesson on figurative language: personification, metaphor, and simile.
· The students were placed into groups to evaluate other literary models: Sierra, Heartland, and Mojave by Diane Siebert.
· Then, students had to choose a topic to research. I invited them to research the country of their birth and gave them a checklist of facts to search for.
· I also shared with them several other examples of the I Poem, including mine on Kerr Lake.
· I conducted a mini-lesson on how to express factual information in the format of an I Poem.
· We also discussed the fact that students needed to cite the sources they used to find information.
· Students read their research and write their poems, highlighting information they would like to include in their writing.
· Then, using the rubric and peer editing, students revise and edit their poems.
· Finally, they presented their poems to several classes, in English and in Spanish.