Lesson 2: Parts of Speech and Rhymes in Poetry

Getting Started

Today you are going to examine the ways poets use parts of speech in their poems. The collection of poetry you will read today focuses on the different regions of the United States. A variety of poets contributed to the collection.

Stuff You Need

  • Handy Guide to Writing by Moving Beyond the Page
  • My America: A Poetry Atlas of the United States by Lee Bennett Hopkins
  • R is for Rhyme: A Poetry Alphabet by Judy Young
  • colored pencils or watercolor paints and paintbrush
  • journal

Ideas to Think About

  • What relationships and patterns can be found within the words of a poem?
  • Why is it important to understand the relationships and patterns found within a poem?
  • How do figurative language and word patterns affect a poem and the reader/listener?

Things to Know

  • Strong verbs and interesting adjectives make a poem stronger and more effective.
  • A noun is a person, place, or thing.
  • An action verb is a word that shows action.
  • An adjective is a word that describes a noun.


  • Respond to fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and drama using interpretive, critical, and evaluative processes by analyzing the authors' word choice and context. (LA)
  • Compose poetry using self-selected and assigned topics. (LA)
  • Compose work that follows the conventions of a particular genre. (LA)
  • Identify structural patterns found in text. (LA)

Introducing the Lesson

Tell your child that today she will explore poems that have subjects related to the northeast region of the United States. Ask your child what she knows about the states in the Northeast.
Reading and Questions
Materials: My America: A Poetry Atlas of the United States by Lee Bennett Hopkins
Read poems about the Northeastern U.S. and the Capital in the book My America: A Poetry Atlas of the United States.
  1. What was your favorite poem? What did you like about it?
    Answers will vary.
  2. Why do you think many poets choose to use rhyming words in their poems?
    Answers will vary.
  3. The poet who wrote "Washington D.C." writes:
    "...Washington D.C.
    the capital of our Nation
    which stands for liberty."
    What does this mean?
    Answers will vary.
  4. After reading the poems in this section, what words come to mind that describe the Northeast?
    Answers will vary.