Playing with Holiday Poetry

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During December when there are so many holidays (i.e. Hanukkah, Kwanza, winter solstice, Christmas Eve, Christmas, New Year's Eve)--or any other time of the year--it's fun to have students play with HOLIDAY POETRY. In the video above (please share with students), I model a holiday poetry lesson step by step with examples. For younger students, you may do this lesson as a group while older students can work on the lesson independently.

First, READ HOLIDAY POEMS BY OTHERS (If we want our students to try a new kind of writing, it ALWAYS helps to have them READ the target kind of writing first).

Second, ANALYZE POEMS BY OTHERS. What poetic techniques did the author use effectively in the poem? Does the poem rhyme? Use alliteration? What about onomatopoeia? etc. Students may write their observation on a copy of a poem using colored pens/pencils or by using track changes on a Word document to add comments (their observations).

Third, students should PLAY WITH THEIR OWN HOLIDAY POEMS. Each should choose a holiday, and then brainstorm words related to that holiday. They can then polish the words--adding poetic devices/tricks to them (i.e. repetition, alliteration, assonance).

EACH STEP of this poetry lesson is included in this HANDOUT (which also includes two poems for students to analyze):
Playing with Holiday Poetry HANDOUT

In the COMMENTS section below, please share the titles of any holiday poems or poetry collections for other teachers to use with their students. Thank you!

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