Poetry as Motivation


         Students actually love to write poetry, especially when the alternative is a twenty-page research paper. Poetry in the history classroom is not meant to be stressful, but to do it correctly students must have knowledge of the material. Students are more willing to do research to find appropriate vocabulary or other information that would make the poetry successful.

         The posting of poetry is perhaps the best way to motivate students to love history. A poetry-friendly history classroom has poetry posted all around the class, on the windows, and even on the class web pages. Students love seeing their work posted and published. Students may also read their poetry at open house or at poetry slams.

         Allow the students time to jump up and down and make celebratory noises such as oooh and aaah! By removing the stress of complication, students will no longer fear poetry and perhaps will be willing to write more. They will feel safe, confident, and be willing to take chances.


Ten Ways to Display Student Poetry


1. Post the poetry around the classroom, library, cafeteria, or other places around the school.


         2. Have the students read the poetry at Open House.


         3. Post the poetry on the class or school Website.


4. Publish the poetry in the class, school or community newspaper.


5. Display or present the poetry at assemblies and school shows.


         6. Conduct a poetry slam, during or after school.


         7. Present the poetry on the school news broadcast.


         8. Create a class book to present to the library.


9. Create videos to present to the school or websites such as YouTube or Teacher Tube (DonŐt use names and get parent permission.)


         10. Create a class podcast.