Classroom Activities: 

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Prose and Heroes-Remembering our Soldiers

Lesson Overview

Overview: Students will view and evaluate primary sources of poetry examples and correlate the relationship of the poet, events in history pertaining to war, and then write their own poems honoring our veterans in our community.
Grade Range: 6-8
Objective: Students will examine and evaluate primary sources of poetry written by U.S. Presidents and other poets. They will recognize elements of history/war/soldiers and connect with real-life, local veterans and understand their roles in society. Students will write poetry with a rhyming pattern figurative language, and content will pay tribute to local veterans.
Time Required: One class period of 40 minutes
Discipline/Subject: Reading/English/Social Studies
Topic/Subject: War, Military/Presidents
Era: Great Depression/World War II, 1929-1945, Postwar United States, 1945-1968


Illinois Learning Standards: Social Studies:
18.B-Understand the roles and interactions of individuals and groups in society.
18.B.3a-Analyze how individuals and groups interact with and within institutions.

Language Arts:
2.B.3a-Respond to literary material from personal, creative, and critical points of view.
3.C-Communicate ideas in writing to accomplish a variety of purposes.
5.B.3a-Choose and analyze information sources for individual, academic and functional purposes.
5.B.3b-Identify, evaluate and cite primary sources.
5.C.3b-Prepare and orally present original work supported by research. 


Handouts: Copies of Primary Sources, LOC Mind Walk Activity (available on PDF)
Analysis Tools: Poem Analysis
Rubrics: Poetry Rubric form Prentice-Hall (available on PDF)
Library of Congress Items: Title of Source: Abraham Lincoln, 1846 (Poem My Child-hood Home I see Again) and Transcript
  Title of Source: Poetry Left at Memorial
Online Resources: Title of Source: Obama as Poet
  Title of Source: Poetry 180 "How to Read a Poem Out Loud"


1. Students will become engaged in thinking about the past by reflecting and evaluating past activities using LOC Mind Walk Activity (page 6 of PDF)
2. Students will read online four keypoints: "How to Read a Poem Out Loud"
3. Students will read and select a poem to analyze from Library of Congress primary sources
4. Students will construct a 12 to 20 line poem to honor an American soldier.
5. Students will recite poems to classmates in class and honored veterans at an all school assembly.


Rubric will be used to evaluate rhyming patter, punctuation, and overall appropriate message to honor our veterans.

Author Credits:

D. Spannagel
Cumberland Middle School