The Deep Memory Poem activity guide is a free
download available on Teachers Pay Teachers. This special lesson on poetry
and poem-writing is designed to fill an approximately 60-90 minute window.
Students who go through the whole exercise will write a poem while practicing
the important elements of poetry including concrete language, deliberate line
breaks, and revision. The goal is a satisfying poem based on personal memory.
The curriculum is a combination of teacher
guide and PowerPoint presentation. The guide offers a well-rounded introduction
to the material and the important elements of the lesson that teachers need to
be sure to impart. It also includes a helpful guide to each of the presentation
slides, indicating approximately how much time to spend on each step of the
instructions and the important lessons of each one.
The lesson presented in this poetry activity is
hugely helpful, especially for the student who has never written poetry before.
Students are guided and supported through every step of the process of writing
a poem drawn from a personal memory, while simultaneously learning about what
constitutes strong poetry and how to consciously read poems. Poetry reading is
a skill that can be practiced and learned, and the lesson teaches the skill
well. The emphasis on writing based on a memory offers a structure for
learning, using emotions and memories from that experience give the writer access
to the thought processes necessary for writing effective poems.
Learning to read poetry has the potential to
make a profound impact on a student’s life, both academic and otherwise, and
the experience of writing a personal poem will be meaningful to many students
who are guided through this activity. The activity introduces the craft of
writing poetry in a way that can be practiced again and again with different
results, making it a powerful addition to any creative writing course and a
valuable lesson for any student wanting to learn about poetry and how to write
Bryan Cohen is the author of more than 30 books, many of which focus on creative writing and blasting through that pesky writer's block. His books have sold more than 20,000 copies. You can find him on Google+ and Facebook.