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One of our schools used paint chips donated from the local hardware store to create poetry. The paint chip had 4 shades of one color. The students filled out the paint chips accordingly… The color is… The color tastes like… the color smells like… the color feels like. The biggest obstacle is getting kids to be creative instead of just writing: “The color is brown / It tastes like poop / It smells like poop / It feels like poop.” Yes, that was an actually entry.

Practice using different poetry tools like alliteration, rhyme, descriptive language, similes, etc… You can even require students to include certain elements. Below is a chart with suggested poetry vocabulary words to pre-teach and practice in your students’ writing based on when we see these words in the Common Core Standards and the PARCC exam.

This is also a great activity for kids learning about reporting the 5 senses in early science lessons (think 1st and 2nd grade) and practicing reading descriptive text structure.

Did you do a fun poetry activity with your kids? Send us your pictures, poems and ideas to share!

Caption: Recommended Vocabulary by Grade Band (compiled from Vocabulary for the Common Core by Marzano)

K-2 2-4 3-5 4-6 6-8 9-12
Poem Descriptive language Theme Alliteration Sonnet Ballad
Rhyme Meaning Imagery Figurative language Couplet
Mental image Metaphor Hyperbole Lyric poem
Rhythm Mood Onomatopoeia Ode
Word choice Sensory language Personification
Simile Pun
Stanza Symbolism
Structure Meter