Great American Poets
Age 12-14: Concept 2 - Semester 2: Unit 5

In this unit, you will learn about the world of poetry. You will learn the basic structure of various poems and how figurative language contributes to a poem's meaning. You will also learn about the different ways to interpret and analyze a poem. While learning about poetry, you will discuss the works of famous poets Edgar Allen Poe, Robert Frost, and poets of the Harlem Renaissance. Your final project will be a poetry journal complete with poems of your own.


  • Able to read and comprehend novels at an 8th or 9th grade reading level
  • Able to write multiple paragraphs on a topic
  • Can write a five-paragraph essay
  • Usually used by children in the eighth grade

Table of Contents

  • Lesson 1: Poetry Basics
  • Lesson 2: Early American Poetry
  • Lesson 3: Figurative Language
  • Lesson 4: Poetic Forms
  • Lesson 5: Edgar Allan Poe
  • Lesson 6: Meaning in Poetry
  • Lesson 7: Poetry Analysis
  • Lesson 8: Robert Frost
  • Lesson 9: Memorizing Poetry
  • Lesson 10: Poems about Poetry
  • Lesson 11: Editing Your Work
  • Lesson 12: Reciting Poetry
  • Final Project: Poetry Journal (3 Days)

Summary of Skills

Moving Beyond the Page is based on state and national standards. These standards are covered in this unit.
  • Analyze idioms, analogies, metaphors, and similes to infer the literal and figurative meanings of phrases. (Language Arts)
  • By the end of the year, read and comprehend literature, including stories, dramas, and poems, at the high end of grades 68 text complexity band independently and proficiently. (Language Arts)
  • Compare and contrast the structure of two or more texts and analyze how the differing structure of each text contributes to its meaning and style. (Language Arts)
  • Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including figurative and connotative meanings; analyze the impact of specific word choices on meaning and tone, including analogies or allusions to other texts. (Language Arts)
  • Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development, organization, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience. (Language Arts)
  • Read and analyze poetry: includes the subgenres of narrative poems, lyrical poems, free verse poems, sonnets, odes, ballads, and epics. (Language Arts)
  • Recite poems (of four to six stanzas), sections of speeches, or dramatic soliloquies, using voice modulation, tone, and gestures expressively to enhance the meaning. (Language Arts)
  • Use an ellipsis to indicate an omission. (Language Arts)
  • Use punctuation (comma, ellipsis, dash) to indicate a pause or break. (Language Arts)
  • Use technology, including the Internet, to produce and publish writing and present the relationships between information and ideas clearly and efficiently. (Language Arts)
  • With some guidance and support from peers and adults, develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, editing, rewriting, or trying a new approach, focusing on how well purpose and audience have been addressed. (Language Arts)
  • Write a poem using poetic techniques (e.g., rhyme scheme, meter); figurative language (e.g., personification, idioms, hyperbole); and graphic elements (e.g., word position). (Language Arts)
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