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Poetry Slam


Subject:Language Arts
Grade:3-5, 6-8, 9-12

Brief Description
Create poems using words cut from newspapers, read the poems in the poetry slam format, and then compile the poems into a book.


Students reinforce knowledge of poetry. Students demonstrate creative-thinking and speaking skills.


newspaper, poem, poetry, literature, library, reading

Materials Needed

  • teacher-selected poetry books
  • a box or bag filled with words of various typefaces cut from newspapers
  • construction paper or tag board
  • paste or glue
  • markers or crayons

Lesson Plan

  • Read examples of various types of poetry from poetry books. Discuss the meanings of those poems with students.
  • Tell students they are going to create their own poems by putting together words cut from newspapers. Show and read a sample poem created from newspaper words.
  • Let students take a handful of words from the bag or box. Distribute the construction paper and paste or glue. Encourage creativity.
  • Introduce the poetry slam format from Poetry Slam, Inc. Tell students they are going to read their poems aloud in the poetry slam format. Encourage students to be as dramatic as possible when they read their poems. Invite teachers and/or students from other classes to serve as judges for the poetry slam.
  • After the poetry slam, compile the poems in a book for the classroom library or learning center. Let students design a cover for the book, using construction paper or tag board and markers or crayons. Variations:
  • Have students bring in newspapers and cut out words they plan to use in their poems.
  • Have students create a specific type of poetry, such as haiku, free verse, couplet, sestina, or cinquain.
  • Have students work together in small groups to create poems.


Evaluate students' participation and poetry slam presentations.

Lesson Plan Source

Education World

Submitted By

Lois Lewis

National Standards

Language Arts:

Originally published 11/13/2000
Last updated 10/31/2007