What am I Poems

My second graders are starting a unit on poetry.  As an introduction we read what am I poems.  Each poem described an animal or food. They students enjoyed trying to guess what food/animal it was describing.

For my low language ELL students, I also have vocabulary sheets that they could refer to while guessing.

Then they used a template to write their own what am I poems. There were great for my struggling writers. They did not get overwhelmed with a large amount of writing, and were very excited to have their peers guess what their poem was describing.

These task cards and writing templates are available on my TPT store.

What am I poetry Bundle

What am I Poems



Writing Poetry

April is national poetry month.  Poems are fun for students to read any time during the year.  They are typically short which is less intimidating for struggling readers or ESOL students.

Writing poems is also fun for students.  Many of the traditional writing conventions are not as strictly enforced in poems.  Students can use fewer words to convey powerful messages.  Poems are a fun way to play around with language.

When teaching poetry there are a number of terms that students are expected to learn. I have developed poetry writing task cards to help introduce students to rhyming, alliteration, imagery, and onomatopoeia.


Mentor Text for Writing: A Chair For My Mother

My 4th grade ESOL students are writing memoirs. I did a mini lesson on descriptive writing using A Chair For My Mother.  This book has many examples of descriptive adjectives and sensory details. I did a read aloud and paused every few pages so that students could share examples they heard.

One page offers a vivid description of the armchair that family is saving up to buy. “Yes, a chair. A wonderful, beautiful, fat, soft armchair. We will get one covered in velvet with roses all over it. We are going to get the best chair in the whole world.”

While the family is shopping for a new chair, there is an example of using a text to self connection in writing. “We tried out big chairs and smaller ones, high chairs and low chairs, soft chairs and harder ones. Grandma said she felt like Goldilocks in “The Three Bears” trying out all the chairs.”

My students enjoyed listening to the story.  The book gave them many examples they can use in their own writing.  Their next steps will be to think of sensory details to add to their memoir.

After discussing the story have students use a sensory details graphic organizer (I have included one below) to write about their own memory.

Enjoy this Memory Graphic Organizer Freebie.

Memory Graphic Organizer