Writing Night Poems with First Graders

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boston night


Heading into another first grade class tomorrow, and we are going to write poems about night. They have been exploring everything having to do with night, so the teacher and I thought writing poems about night would be a good way for them to get down in a creative form the different things that they have been learning. Here’s how we decided to set it up:

Writing Night Poems

First Grade

Objective: For the students to articulate their vision of night in the form of a picture and in the form of a poem.

Skills: translating image in head to paper; using specific and concrete language; using five senses in writing; interpreting a peers picture into poetrynight drawings16 copy

  1. Start by looking at a drawing or two of Night. I found some cool ones online.
  2. Talk about what we see and as the students talk, write what they say on the board, creating a spontaneous poem. (Teacher will do this)
  3. Have the students draw what they think night looks like. We draw with them!
  4. Students pass their drawings to someone else in class,
  5. Read a poem about night (see below)
  6. Talk about the moves that the poem makes in the poem. Come up with some great night words. Write on board
  7. Students then write what they see in their friend’s drawing, creating another, self-written night poem that is inspired by their friend’s drawing.Teachers write too!
  8. Share

This will probably take more than one period, but I think we can get the project up and running and then the teacher can take over and lead it to its conclusion.

Materials needed:
Working smart board to project pictures
Big white board to make the collaborative poem about night
Big sheets of paper and pencils, pens, and crayons for the kid’s drawings of night
Paper to write their own poems about the pictures

ashcan night

Poem to read Thanks to Larry Fagin!

in the night I sleep like a pig.

in the night I dream the pig goes to heaven.

in the night I see stars twinkling in the window.

in the night the moon is spinning like a crystal ball.

in the night my pajamas glow in the dark.

in the night the darkness glows like the inside of a cave.

in the night the breeze blows hard on my silent pajamas.

in the night the ghost of the living dead smiles at my baby doll.

in the night all my dolls wave at the ghosts.

in the night I dream of living crickets who crawl inside my pajamas.

in the night my shy little baby sleeps his head off.

in the night owls hoot to the glaring sky.

in the night pickles whisper to 7-Up.

in the night my heart beats slowly and quietly like the only muscle I have.

in the night soft jazz plays into the windy darkness.

in the night fog clouds up the land.

in the night the river sleeps and dreams about the magic flounder.

in the night the kingfisher grounds me for nothing.

in the night the little mermaid shakes her tail and finds her prince.

in the night the clothes in the hamper are exhausted.

in the night time does not sleep.

in the night the closet silently opens.

in the night I lie awake thinking about Fred.

in the night my butler wakes me for a joke.

in the night the janitor gently sweeps the school.

in the night Mrs. Dixon heats up the milk for the baby.

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