You are on page 1of 57

Part I:

The Unit Title and


Preface

Human tragedies: We all want to be extraordinary and we all just want to fit
in. Unfortunately, extraordinary people rarely fit in.
Sebastyne Young

Finding My Place:
Theme of Belonging

Kelsey Hoover
North Carolina State University
ECI 430/435

A. Context for Learning


Beginning in January 2015, I will have the opportunity to begin the journey of full-time
student teaching at Holly Grove Middle School. Holly Grove Middle could be characterized as a
suburban education facility located in Holly Springs, North Carolina, near Apex. I have been
placed in a sixth grade language arts and social studies classroom under the supervision of my
cooperating teacher, Mrs. Lynn Beddingfield. Mrs. Beddingfield has been an educator for
twelve years and has earned National Board Certification in Early Adolescent English Language
Arts, in addition to achieving a Masters Degree in Education. After observing both of Mrs.
Beddingfields language arts classes and both of her social studies classes, I chose to focus on
the content area of language arts. The unit plan I have created is centered on poetry and
effectively integrates discussions, activities, and texts concerning the theme of belonging. The
Finding My Place Unit will span over three weeks and will consist of many opportunities for
students to not only grow as individuals, but grow together as well.
Over the next five months, I will be involved with four core classes at Holly Grove
Middle, two language arts courses and two social studies courses. Each of these core classes are
yearlong and meet each day for fifty minutes. Usually forty minutes a day are devoted to direct
instruction. Core One and Core Two are social studies courses and Core Three and Core Four
are language arts courses. There are thirty students total in Core One, fifteen girls and fifteen
boys, thirty-one students total in Core Two, thirteen girls and eighteen boys, thirty-three students
total in Core Three, fourteen girls and nineteen boys, and twenty-eight students total in Core
Four, fifteen girls and thirteen boys.
The social studies classes are heterogeneously grouped while the language arts classes are
homogeneously grouped. In Core Three, the students are classified as Academically Gifted and
in the Core Four the students are classified as SPED. A Special Education Teacher is in Core
Four every day. Each core has various Individual Education Plans and 504 plans but most of the
accommodations described within these plans are for classroom and testing environments. Many
of the classroom accommodations include chunking assignments, graphic organizers, and
extended time. Separate setting, read aloud, and extended time are some of the common testing
accommodations.
Throughout my student teaching experience, there are many aspects that will potentially
affect my planning and/or delivery of instruction. For instance, Holly Grove Middle operates on
a year-round schedule. In order to ensure that each student is receiving the same content
knowledge and practice, the Wake County School System has provided every grade level with a
required curriculum and pacing guide that each educator is expected to loosely follow. Although
each instructor has access to the pacing guide, also known as C-MAPP, Mrs. Beddingfield, along
with the other teachers, have the freedom to incorporate any outside texts and activities not listed
or suggested on the county plan. From my observations, my cooperating teacher rarely uses a
textbook. In many instances, Mrs. Beddingfield uses pieces from Junior Scholastic, Scholastic
Scope, and other various online resources to use during instruction, activities, and/or discussion.
In addition to outside sources, my cooperating teacher also integrates a variety of technologies in
her classroom such as Turning Points clickers, laptops, Smart Slate, a document camera, as well
as a projector.

B. Organizational Principle
Though I was able to create a list of many ideas that could eventually morph into the
focus of a thematic poetry unit, there was only one possibility that encompassed the traits that I
felt were necessary for a middle school student to experience and embrace. For several reasons,
the theme of belonging seemed to be the most appropriate focus for the unit plan I will be
crafting and creating. Throughout the phase of the middle grades, every adolescent struggles
with identity. Although friends and family influence many aspects of a teenagers behavior and
actions, he/she is constantly redefining him/herself. In regards to such a sensitive stage of life, I
feel like the ultimate goal of middle school is to assist each student in feeling a sense of security.
Every adolescent in the world wants to belong to some form of group and experience the
satisfaction of fitting in. I chose to incorporate the theme of belonging into my unit plan
because the education each student receives while in school should be meaningful and
applicable. I hope to engage each curious mind with this unit and provide some sense of
direction and advice for those struggling with the larger question of middle school: Who am I?

C. Primary Subject Matter Focus


The art of poetry is the primary subject matter focus of the Finding My Place thematic
unit plan. Several aspects that combine together to create pieces of poetry compliment the notion
of belonging, which is the central theme of the unit. When teaching several facets of poetry such
as speaker, mood and tone, theme, sensory and figurative language, sound devices, and poetic
forms, a sense of identity shines through. Great poetry consists of many features that can only be
created when the writer is being completely honest with him/herself. The most powerful pieces
are produced when the writer is able to express his/her feelings in a raw and honest fashion.
Throughout the Finding My Place unit, every student will be able to examine many poems that
relate to the concept of belonging. Each student will also be given the opportunity to explore
his/her own feelings of identify be participating in class activities and discussions. Poetry is an
outlet for many who cannot express themselves effectively. Through the use of words and/or
phrases, fear, anger, sadness, and happiness can be articulated and conveyed. Because of this
very reason, each student should be given the opportunity to study the art of poetry and its many
facets. Although many children do not possess the same passion I have for poetry, I am
determined to change their perspective and provide another outlet for those who have difficultly
expressing themselves and their unique thoughts.

D. Organizing Questions

What does it mean to belong?


How does learning about ourselves teach us about others?
How can one utilize life experiences as a foundation for creative and expressive thinking?

E. Goals

My students will be able to:


o Use technology to discover various forms of poetry.
o Identify, comprehend, and create various forms of poetic devices.
o Understand that poetry can be found in many forms.
o Realize that their voice matters.
o Interact and collaborate effectively with their peers.
o Experience various perspectives concerning the topic of belonging.
o Produce individual pieces of poetry.
o Recognize that the concept of finding ones place is significant to everyone.

F. General Unit Objectives


Cognitive
GO SO
1. Analyze various forms of poetic devices.
1.1 Speaker
1.2 Mood
1.3 Tone
1.4 Theme
1.5 Sensory Language
1.6 Figurative Language
2. Investigate the perspectives of others.
2.1 Recognize perspectives of others
2.2 Identify elements that shape perspectives
3. Develop critical thinking skills when reading.
3.1 Identify perspectives of characters in a text
3.2 Explore feelings of characters
4. Interpret and respond to material from various sources.
4.1 Photos
4.2 Poems
4.3 Videos
4.4 Technology
5. Use poetic models to inform their own writing.
5.1 Imitates style of writing pieces
5.2 Identifies various literary and poetic elements
Affective
6. Participate in classroom activities.
6.1 Compose in-class writing

6.2 Compose out of class writing


6.3 Participate in class discussion
6.4 Listen attentively to others
7. Value his/her individual perspective.
7.1 Write from own perspective
7.2 Share perspective with others
8. Work cooperatively with others.
8.1 Brainstorm as a group
8.2 Make choices as a group
Performance
9. Compose original writing.
9.1 Write in journal
9.2 Write examples
9.3 Write a poem
10. Present material orally.
10.1 Share an original piece with the class
10.2 Use effective speaking skills
Common Core State Standards

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.6.1
o Cite textual evidence to support analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as
inferences drawn from the text.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.6.4
o Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including
figurative and connotative meanings; analyze the impact of a specific word choice
on meaning and tone
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.6.7
o Compare and contrast the experience of reading a story, drama, or poem to
listening to or viewing an audio, video, or live version of the text, including
contrasting what they "see" and "hear" when reading the text to what they
perceive when they listen or watch.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.6.5
o Demonstrate understanding of figurative language, word relationships, and
nuances in word meanings.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.W.6.4
o Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development, organization, and
style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.

G. Possible Unit Materials and Supplementary Texts


[An asterisk (*) indicates that the item is included in the Finding My Place thematic unit plan.]
Poems:

Swimming Upstream: Middle School Poems by Kristine OConnell George*


The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost*
Nothing Gold Can Stay by Robert Frost
The Other Me, by Kristine OConnell George: Found in Swimming Upstream, Middle
School Poems*
What Id Cook for My Teacher, by Bruce Lansky*
I Dont Belong, by Katie Chambers*
Whatif, by Shel Silverstein*
The Sneetches, by Dr. Seuss*
This Is Just To Say, by William Carlos Williams*
Autumn is Orange, by Eric Ode*
Ode to Pablos Tennis Shoes, by Gary Soto*
The American Eagle, by Jeff Nathan*
Naming the Seasons, by Angela Yardy*
Winter, by Holly Black*

YouTube Videos:

Mood and Tone Words: http://youtu.be/jDUhDV-72S0 *


Original Mary Poppins Trailer: http://youtu.be/fuWf9fP-A-U *
Scary Mary Poppins Trailer: http://youtu.be/2T5_0AGdFic *
The Road Not Taken, by Robert Frost: http://youtu.be/ie2Mspukx14 *
Roar, by Katy Perry: http://youtu.be/5ucBHUHV9sU *
Sneetches, by Dr. Seuss: http://youtu.be/qPhOZzsi_6Q *

Photos:

Normal Cinderella Castle*


o http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/5/52/Cinderella_Castle_2013_W
ade.jpg
Scary Cinderella Castle*
o http://www.davewilsonphotography.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/06/DisneyWorld-June-2010-242And8more.jpg
A girl and her dog*
o http://www.adorama.com/alc/files/17279e6b9ab32ea3f38e9b2a52587f25.jpg
Just married photo*
o http://www.weddingwindow.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/justmarried.jpg
Best friends*
o http://www.adriannapaige.com/wpcontent/uploads/2012/12/AdriannaTeerlinkbffhands.jpg

Photo of a dog swimming in a pool*


o http://www.highsnobiety.com/news/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/dogsswimming-pool-1.jpg
Photo of a dog biting his tail*
o http://www.freeduh.com/wpcontent/uploads/2011/03/dear_diary_guess_what_i_did_today.jpg

Handouts:

Lyrics to Roar, by Katy Perry*


Poetry Analysis handout*
Poetry Practice handout*
Final Poetry Project guidelines and rubric*

Aesthetic Materials:

Document camera*
Laptop*
Projector*
Large Post-It notes*
Markers/colored pencils*
Construction paper
Access to technology*
Access to the Internet*
Individual laptops*
iPads for each group*
Presentations*

H. Possible Activities/Instructional Strategies


[An asterisk (*) indicates that the item is included in the Finding My Place thematic unit plan.]

Group discussions/work*
Classroom discussions/work*
Skits
Individual written responses*
Individual conferences*
Peer review/editing
Activities that promote social interactions*
Summative creative poetry assignment*
Individual/group poetry writing*
Vocabulary*
Free-writes*
Broadside Develop an interpretation of a personal piece using technology, drawings,
etc.

Exit-slip*
Reading aloud*
Worksheets*
Guided note-taking*
Jigsaw activity
Video clips*
Write/Pair/Share*
Poetry WebQuest*
Online Cork Board*
Competition*
Presentations*
Think/Pair/Share*
Google Doc*
Individual Study*

I. Unit Map/Narrative Overview


Day 1 Roses are red, violets are blue, I love poetry and I hope you will, too!
1. Materials: Laptop, projector, presentation, a laptop for each student, internet access for each
student, teacher example, list of pre-approved websites for Poetry WebQuest, Online Cork Board
2. Warm-Up: 8 Minutes

Free-write: What does it mean to belong?


Write-Pair-Share: The students will discuss their responses with a partner. The instructor
will then ask for volunteers to share their thoughts.
3. Instruction: 12 Minutes

After everyone who wanted to volunteer has finished, the teacher will introduce the
theme of the unit and why it is important for students to understand and grasp the concept
of belonging.
Class Discussion: Other questions that will be asked by the teacher:
o What is a poem?
o Why is poetry written?
o Why is poetry important?
o What makes a poem interesting or exciting to read?
Ideally, the students will provide responses to each of the questions listed above. After a
brief discussion, the instructor will introduce the content focus of the thematic unit,
which would be the concept of poetry.
4. Activity: 25 Minutes

In hopes of sparking interest and excitement, the students will participate in a Poetry
WebQuest. Each student will be given access to a laptop, in addition to a list of
websites to search. Every student will be challenged to discover a poem they identify
with or enjoy.
The instructor will also provide an example for the students.
5. Closure: 5 Minutes

Exit Slip: Each student will post a sticky note onto the Online Cork Board (Linoit.com)
that has a link to the poem they discovered. Below each link, every student will also
write a few sentences describing why they chose their particular poem.
To conclude, each student will place their laptop back onto the laptop cart and pack up
their belongings.
* NOTE: The teacher will print off each students poem and hand them out the following day.

Day 2 Wait, who said that?


1. Materials: Laptop, projector, internet access, presentation, guided notes handout for each
student, individual copies of each students chosen poem, Swimming Upstream Middle School
Poems by Kristine OConnell George

2. Warm-Up: 5 Minutes

Who is the speaker in this poem?


o The Other Me, by Kristine OConnell George: Found in Swimming Upstream,
Middle School Poems
Write-Pair-Share: The students will discuss their responses with a partner. The instructor
will then ask for volunteers to share their thoughts.
3. Instruction: 15 Minutes

A presentation will be created introduce the following:


o Speaker: The speaker is the voice behind the poem the person we imagine to be
speaking. Its important to note that the speaker is not the poet. Even if the poem
is biographical, you should treat the speaker as a fictional creation, because the
writer is choosing what to say about himself. Besides, even poets dont speak in
poetry in their everyday lives although it would be cool if they did. *Found at
http://bit.ly/14Itl8N
o After reading a poem, try to describe the person who is speaking to you in general
terms.
This is an inference; try to explain what you know about the person
talking based on the words they use. (Be sure to discuss the definition and
significance of diction/word choice.)
Example: Does the speaker seem to be young or old?
The students will be given a shell of notes, similar to a guided notes activity, and will
be required to fill in the necessary items.
4. Activity: 20 Minutes

Also provided in the presentation will be several examples that will be discussed as a
class and in groups.
o What Id Cook for My Teacher, by Bruce Lansky (as a class)
o I Dont Belong, by Katie Chambers (as a group, then discuss as a class)
o Whatif, by Shel Silverstein (as a group, then discuss as a class)
5. Closure: 10 Minutes

To conclude the presentation, the students will be given a printed copy of the poem they
posted to the Online Cork Board.
Homework: The students will be asked to determine the speaker of the poem they chose.
In addition to identifying the speaker, each student will be required to write a paragraph
describing his/her rationale. The students will be encouraged to use evidence from the
poem, just as practiced during the class and group discussions.
Begin reading aloud Swimming Upstream Middle School Poems, by Kristine OConnell
George.

Day 3 Its not what you say; its how you say it, my dear.
1. Materials: Laptop, projector, internet access, presentation, guided notes handout for each
student, a copy of The Road Not Taken, by Robert Frost for each student, Swimming Upstream
Middle School Poems by Kristine OConnell George

2. Warm-Up: 10 Minutes

These photos of Cinderellas Castle were taken at Disney World. The same castle is
pictured in both photos. How does each picture makes you feel? Write 3-4 sentences
describing each photograph.
o http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/5/52/Cinderella_Castle_2013_W
ade.jpg (Normal Cinderella Castle)
o http://www.davewilsonphotography.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/06/DisneyWorld-June-2010-242And8more.jpg (Scary Cinderella Castle)
Write-Pair-Share: The students will discuss their responses with a partner. The instructor
will then ask for volunteers to share their thoughts.
* NOTE: While the students are completing the warm-up, the instructor will collect the
homework from the night before.
3. Instruction: 20 Minutes

A presentation will be created to introduce the following:


o Definitions and examples of mood and tone.
The students will be given a shell of notes, similar to a guided notes activity, and will
be required to fill in the necessary items.
View this video: http://youtu.be/jDUhDV-72S0 [4:13] (The instructor can skip around in
the video to conserve time.)
o Discuss how the music in the video complimented each facial expression shown.
View the following videos:
o http://youtu.be/fuWf9fP-A-U [4:14] (Begin video at 0:43)
o http://youtu.be/2T5_0AGdFic [1:06]
Write/Pair/Share: The students will answer the following questions and then discuss their
responses with a partner. After each pair has had the opportunity to chat, the instructor
will ask for volunteers to share.
o How is the mood changed from the first video to the second one? Be sure to
provide evidence to support your claims.
o How does the tone help change the mood of the first video to the second? Be sure
to provide evidence to support your claims.
4. Activity: 15 Minutes

Read aloud The Road Not Taken, by Robert Frost in an optimistic tone.
o Each student will be given a copy of the poem.
As a group, the students will answer the following questions:
o What kind of mood did this poem put you in?
o What was the tone of the speaker who was reading the poem?
View this video: http://youtu.be/ie2Mspukx14 [1:05]
o Class discussion:
What kind of mood did the poem put you in now?
What was the tone of the speaker who was reading the poem?
How would you describe the speaker?
Did your answers change from the first read aloud to the second? Why or
why not?

5. Closure: 5 Minutes

Exit Slip: On a scrap sheet of paper complete the following:


o Tell me about three things you learned today!
o Do you have any unanswered questions or lingering thoughts about the material
covered in class today?
If time permits: Continue reading aloud Swimming Upstream Middle School Poems, by
Kristine OConnell George.

Day 4 The Bigger Picture


1. Materials: Laptop, projector, presentation, internet access, guided notes handout for each
student, a copy of the lyrics from Roar, by Katy Perry for each student, a copy of The
Sneetches, by Dr. Seuss for each student, Swimming Upstream Middle School Poems by
Kristine OConnell George
2. Warm-Up: 8 Minutes

What do all of these photos have in common?


o http://www.adorama.com/alc/files/17279e6b9ab32ea3f38e9b2a52587f25.jpg (A
girl and her dog)
o http://www.weddingwindow.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/justmarried.jpg (Just married photo)
o http://www.adriannapaige.com/wpcontent/uploads/2012/12/AdriannaTeerlinkbffhands.jpg (Best friends)
Write-Pair-Share: The students will discuss their responses with a partner. The instructor
will then ask for volunteers to share their thoughts.
3. Instruction: 28 Minutes

A presentation will be created to introduce the following:


o Definition of theme
o Helpful questions to consider when determining theme(s):
Does this remind me of anything else I have read?
Is there a lesson to learn?
Is there an emotion to understand?
Is there something to appreciate?
The students will be given a shell of notes, similar to a guided notes activity, and will
be required to fill in the necessary items.
View this video: http://youtu.be/5ucBHUHV9sU [3:48]
o Each student will be given a copy of the lyrics to Roar, by Katy Perry
o Class discussion:
Why was the song written?
What is the message the singer wants to the audience to understand?
What is the theme of the song?
View this video: http://youtu.be/qPhOZzsi_6Q [12:10] (Begin video at 0:49 and end at
11:44)
o Each student will be given a copy of The Sneetches, by Dr. Seuss.

4. Activity: 10 Minutes

Competition: As a group, the students will try to determine as many themes as possible
that can be found in The Sneetches, by Dr. Seuss. The themes must be correct. Any
themes that are questionable will need textual evidence to serve as proof. The group who
discovers the most accurate themes will win a prize.
5. Closure: 4 Minutes

Homework: The students will be asked to determine the theme of the poem they chose on
the first day of the unit. In addition to identifying the theme(s), each student will be
required to write a paragraph describing his/her rationale. The students will be
encouraged to use evidence from the poem, just as practiced during the class and group
discussions.
If time permits: Continue reading aloud Swimming Upstream Middle School Poems, by
Kristine OConnell George.

Day 5 Our five senses are incomplete without the sixth, a sense of humor!
1. Materials: Laptop, projector, presentation, internet access, guided notes handout for each
student, Poetry Analysis handout for each student, Swimming Upstream Middle School Poems,
by Kristine OConnell George
2. Warm-Up: 5 Minutes

After looking at the photo, what can you:


o See?
o Hear?
o Feel?
o Smell?
o Taste?
http://www.highsnobiety.com/news/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/dogs-swimming-pool1.jpg (Photo of a dog swimming in a pool)
The instructor will ask for volunteers to share their thoughts.
3. Instruction: 15 Minutes

A presentation will be created to introduce the following:


o Definition of sensory language
Writers use sensory language as a means of making their writing more
realistic and descriptive.
Emphasize diction/word choice.
o When you read a poem, ask yourself what is described so well that you can
almost:
See it?
Hear it?
Feel it?
Smell it?
Taste it?

The students will be given a shell of notes, similar to a guided notes activity, and will
be required to fill in the necessary items.
Class discussion:
o View the poem: This Is Just To Say, by William Carlos Williams
What sense(s) does this poem appeal to? Why?
o View the poem: Autumn is Orange, by Eric Ode
What sense(s) does this poem appeal to? Why?
4. Activity: 25 Minutes

Each student will be given a Poetry Analysis handout. The handout will serve as a
formative assessment and review for the students. Questions concerning aspects of
speaker, mood and tone, theme, and sensory language will be included.
Each student will be put into groups of three to complete the Poetry Analysis activity.
Every group will receive a different poem to analyze.
The students will be made aware that on the following day, each group will present their
analysis. Each group will be required to:
o Read aloud their particular poem.
o Briefly describe the speaker, mood and tone, theme, and any sensory language
used.
5. Closure: 5 Minutes

To conclude, each student will turn in their individual Poetry Analysis activity to the
teacher.
If time permits: Continue reading aloud Swimming Upstream Middle School Poems, by
Kristine OConnell George.

Day 6 Im ready for my close-up, Mr. Deville. Gloria Swanson


1. Materials: Completed Sticky-Notes from each group, Swimming Upstream Middle School
Poems, by Kristine OConnell George
2. Warm-Up: 2 Minutes

Each group will have two minutes to prepare for their presentation. For example, the
students may need to:
o Determine who will discuss each aspect of the assignment.
o Tie up any loose ends.
3. Instruction: N/A
Direct instruction will not be used in this lesson.
4. Activity: 45 Minutes

During this time, each group will have the opportunity to present their Poetry Analysis
handout completed the day before.
The instructor will ask guiding questions to assist any groups that need further analysis or
support.

Accountability and Review: In order to hold the other students accountable while a group
is presenting, the instructor will require each group to ask the class a question before
providing an answer for the same question. For example, after reading their poem aloud,
a group may ask the class, Who is the speaker of our poem? The class will respond
and the group will continue with their presentation.
o Each student will be asked to write their responses on a sheet of paper and hand it
in to the instructor after all of the presentations have been completed.
5. Closure: 3 Minutes

If time permits: Continue reading aloud Swimming Upstream Middle School Poems, by
Kristine OConnell George.

Day 7 Busy as Bees!


1. Materials: Laptop, projector, presentation, guided notes handout for each student, a large
Sticky-Note for each group, markers, Swimming Upstream Middle School Poems, by Kristine
OConnell George
2. Warm-Up: 6 Minutes

What makes this photo funny?


http://www.freeduh.com/wpcontent/uploads/2011/03/dear_diary_guess_what_i_did_today.jpg (Photo of a dog biting
his tail)
Write-Pair-Share: The students will discuss their responses with a partner. The instructor
will then ask for volunteers to share their thoughts.
3. Instruction: 22 Minutes

A presentation will be created to introduce the following:


o Definition of figurative language and literal language
o Definitions and examples of some of the forms of figurative language:
Simile
Metaphor
Personification
Hyperbole
Symbolism
Write/Pair/Share: The students will be asked to create examples of each of the forms of
figurative language discussed and share their examples with their group.
The students will be given a shell of notes, similar to a guided notes activity, and will
be required to fill in the necessary items.
4. Activity: 20 Minutes

The students will be asked to work together at their tables to determine an example for
each form of figurative language discussed during instruction. In addition to creating an
example, each group will also be asked to draw a picture that represents each example.
Each group will have access to one large Sticky-Note and markers and will be expected
to complete the five examples and drawings during the allotted twenty minutes.

The instructor will provide an example for the students to view.


On the following day each group will briefly present their examples and drawings during
the warm-up portion of the class as a means of review.
5. Closure: 2 Minutes

To end the class session, the students will be asked to return the markers to the box and
hang their completed Sticky-Notes on the back wall.
If time permits: Continue reading aloud Swimming Upstream Middle School Poems, by
Kristine OConnell George.

Day 8 Sometimes a pencil sharpener is needed in order to make a good point.


1. Materials: Each groups completed Sticky-Note, laptop, projector, presentation, guided
notes handout for each student, a copy of two poems for each group, highlighters, an iPad for
each group, Swimming Upstream Middle School Poems, by Kristine OConnell George
2. Warm-Up: 12 Minutes

Each group will be given the opportunity to present their Sticky-Note to the class. The
students will read their example and describe the picture corresponding to each example.
The instructor will treat every presentation as a formative assessment.
3. Instruction: 15 Minutes

A presentation will be created to introduce the following:


o Review definition of figurative language and literal language
o Definitions and examples of some of the forms of figurative language:
Idioms
Oxymoron
Pun
Allusion
Write/Pair/Share: The students will be asked to create examples of each of the forms of
figurative language discussed and share their examples with their group.
The students will be given a shell of notes, similar to a guided notes activity, and will
be required to fill in the necessary items.
4. Activity: 20 Minutes

Each group of students will be given two of poems listed below and challenged to
find/highlight various forms of figurative language throughout each piece. The in-class
assignment will be started today and completed during the warm-up portion of the next
class period.
o Ode to Pablos Tennis Shoes, by Gary Soto (metaphor, simile)
o The American Eagle, by Jeff Nathan (personification, pun, symbolism)
o Naming the Seasons, by Angela Yardy (personification, hyperbole, metaphor)
o Winter, by Holly Black (allusion)
Each group will be expected to work collaboratively to determine the various forms of
figurative language used throughout the pieces. In addition to identifying the various

forms, each group must provide a two-sentence rationale describing why they consider a
particular word/phrase/poem a form of figurative language.
Every student will have access to highlighters. Each group will be given one iPad to use
as a tool to look up definitions and meanings.
The instructor will walk around to each group and become part of the discussion. While
listening and interacting with the students, the instructor can use the in-class group
activity as a formative assessment.
5. Closure: 3 Minutes

To end the class session, the students will be asked to turn in their poems and return the
markers to the box. The poems will be returned to each group the following day.
If time permits: Continue reading aloud Swimming Upstream Middle School Poems, by
Kristine OConnell George.

Day 9 Its time we stop. Hey, whats that sound? Everybody look whats going down.
1. Materials: Each groups poems, a clean copy of each poem, document camera, highlighters,
laptop, projector, presentation, guided notes handout for each student, Poetry Practice
assignment for each student, Swimming Upstream Middle School Poems, by Kristine OConnell
George
2. Warm-Up: 20 Minutes

Class discussion: The students will not have a formal warm-up activity to complete
today. Instead, the instructor will begin the class session by returning each groups set of
poems. A discussion regarding the activity the students completed the day before will
follow.
The teacher will project every poem on the Document Camera and read each aloud.
After each student has heard/read the poem, the instructor will ask for volunteers to
locate where a form of figurative language can be found throughout the poem.
The instructor will highlight the correct words/phrases on the poem.
o Not found in the poems: oxymoron and idiom
o Think/Pair/Share: Ask each student to think of an example of an oxymoron and an
idiom. The students will discuss their responses with a partner. Afterwards, the
instructor will then ask for volunteers to share their thoughts.
3. Instruction: 15 Minutes

A presentation will be created to introduce the following:


o Definition of sound devices
o Definitions and examples of some sound devices:
Alliteration
Peter Piper, by Mother Goose
Onomatopoeia
Skinny, by Shel Silverstein
Assonance
The sailor said hey to Mae in passing.

Repetition
Rhyme scheme
The students will be given a shell of notes, similar to a guided notes activity, and will
be required to fill in the necessary items.
4. Activity: 13 Minutes

Individual activity: The students will be given a Poetry Practice handout and will be
expected to complete the assignment individually.
o The assignment will feature five poems:
Jimmy Jet and His TV Set, by Shel Silverstein
Summer Stars, by Carl Sandburg
December Leaves, by Kaye Starbird
Lost Dog, by Frances Rodman
Rain in Summer, by Henry W. Longfellow
The students will begin the handout in-class and complete it for homework.
The assignment will be evaluated as a formative assessment.
5. Closure: 2 Minutes

Homework: The students will be asked to complete the Poetry Practice handout for
homework. The assignment will be turned in to the teacher on the following day.
If time permits: Continue reading aloud Swimming Upstream Middle School Poems, by
Kristine OConnell George.

Day 10 Find your inspiration.


1. Materials: Laptop, projector, presentation, guided notes handout for each student, Final
Poetry Project guidelines for each student, Final Poetry Project rubric for each student, Final
Poetry Project example, Swimming Upstream Middle School Poems, by Kristine OConnell
George
2. Warm-Up: 8 Minutes

Read the following poem:


o Sometimes I feel like
Its an upside down day.
And I never quite know
When Ill wake up that way.
I get up in the morning
And know everything is not right.
Cause what I sees all around
Gives me a terrible fright.
o Extend the poem. Follow the same rhyme scheme and add four more lines to the
poem above.

While the students are completing the warm-up activity, the instructor will collect the
Poetry Practice handout that was finished for homework.
Write-Pair-Share: The students will discuss their responses with a partner. The instructor
will then ask for volunteers to share their thoughts.
3. Instruction: 30 Minutes

A presentation will be created to introduce the following:


o Definitions and examples of some forms of poetry:
Couplet
Each student will write their own couplet.
Sonnet
The class will write a sonnet together.
Haiku
Each student will write their own haiku.
Lyric
The class will look at an example and then imitate its appearance,
rhyme scheme, etc. to create a new lyric poem.
Free Verse
Each student will choose a partner and write a free verse poem
together.
The students will be given a shell of notes, similar to a guided notes activity, and will
be required to fill in the necessary items.
4. Activity: 10 Minutes

The instructor will introduce the Final Poetry Project guidelines and requirements. In
addition, the instructor will also provide an example for the students to view and answer
any questions that may arise.
o Final Poetry Project:
Pick your favorite song.
Identify the following and provide evidence to support your
claims:
o Speaker
o Mood
o Tone
o Theme
o Any sensory language
o Any figurative language
o Any sound devices
o Any symbols
Answer the following question in 3-4 sentences.
o Why do you like/enjoy this particular song?
Imitate your song: Mimic your songs rhyme scheme and length to create
a new song/poem! You may choose to write about any topic or idea but it
must follow the same structure as the song you chose. Be creative!
Presentation: You have two options:

Explain to the class why you like/enjoy the song you chose and
describe in detail three of the poetry elements assigned.
Read aloud your imitation of the song you chose!

5. Closure: 2 Minutes

If time permits: Continue reading aloud Swimming Upstream Middle School Poems, by
Kristine OConnell George.

Day 11 Remember: It is spelled poeTRY for a reason!


1. Materials: Laptop, projector, presentation, guided notes handout for each student, a laptop
for each student, ear buds for each student, internet access for each student, Google Doc access
for each student, Swimming Upstream Middle School Poems, by Kristine OConnell George
2. Warm-Up: 3 Minutes
Do you any questions about the Final Poetry Project?
The instructor will ask for volunteers to share their concerns.
3. Instruction: 25 Minutes

A presentation will be created to introduce the following:


o Definitions and examples of some forms of poetry:
Diamante
Each student will write their own diamante.
Limerick
The class will write a limerick together.
Tanka
Each student will choose a partner and write a tanka together.
Cinquain
The class will write a cinquain together.
The students will be given a shell of notes, similar to a guided notes activity, and will
be required to fill in the necessary items.
4. Activity: 20 Minutes

The students will be instructed to grab their assigned laptop out of the cart and a set of ear
buds. Each student will begin searching for particular song lyrics to use in their Final
Poetry Project.
Each students selection must be approved by the instructor.
After receiving approval, each student will post their song selection and artist on a
Google Doc. Each student will be been given access to the Google Doc prior to the class
session.
* NOTE: The teacher will print each selection and distribute to the students the next day.
5. Closure: 2 Minutes

To conclude, each student will place their laptop back onto the laptop cart and pack up
their belongings.

If time permits: Continue reading aloud Swimming Upstream Middle School Poems, by
Kristine OConnell George.

Day 12 Working hard or hardly working?


1. Materials: Individual copies of each students chosen song, Swimming Upstream Middle
School Poems, by Kristine OConnell George
2. Warm-Up: 3 Minutes
Each student will be given their printed selection to use in their Final Poetry Project.
3. Instruction: N/A
Direct instruction will not be used in this lesson.
4. Activity: 45 Minutes

The majority of class-time will be devoted to individual study. Each student will have
the opportunity to work on various aspects of his/her Final Poetry Project. The teacher
will be available during this time to answer any questions.
5. Closure: 2 Minutes

Homework: Continue working on your Final Poetry Project.


If time permits: Continue reading aloud Swimming Upstream Middle School Poems, by
Kristine OConnell George.

Day 13 Keep on keeping on.


1. Materials: Swimming Upstream Middle School Poems, by Kristine OConnell George
2. Warm-Up: 10 Minutes

We all want to be extraordinary and we all just want to fit in. Unfortunately,
extraordinary people rarely fit in. In your opinion, what does this quote mean?
Write-Pair-Share: The students will discuss their responses with a partner. The instructor
will then ask for volunteers to share their thoughts.
3. Instruction: N/A

Direct instruction will not be used in this lesson.

4. Activity: 35 Minutes

The rest of class-time will be devoted to individual study. Each student will have the
opportunity to work on various aspects of his/her Final Poetry Project. The teacher will
be available during this time to answer any questions.
5. Closure: 5 Minutes

Homework: Final Poetry Project due tomorrow!

If time permits: Continue reading aloud Swimming Upstream Middle School Poems, by
Kristine OConnell George.

Day 14 Why are you trying so hard to fit in when you were born to stand out?
1. Materials: Individual rubrics for each presentation
2. Warm-Up: 2 Minutes

Each student will have the opportunity to get organized and relaxed before presentations
begin.
3. Instruction: N/A

Direct instruction will not be used in this lesson.

4. Activity: 45 Minutes
The students will be randomly selected to present.
* NOTE: The Final Poetry Project will be evaluated as a summative assessment.
5. Closure: 3 Minutes

Each student will turn in their Final Poetry Project to the teacher. Those who have not
presented will have their project returned to them tomorrow.

Day 15 What matters most is not what you are, but who you are.
1. Materials: Individual rubrics for each presentation
2. Warm-Up: 2 Minutes

Each student will have the opportunity to get organized and relaxed before presentations
begin.
3. Instruction: N/A

Direct instruction will not be used in this lesson.

4. Activity: 30 Minutes
The students will be randomly selected to present.
* NOTE: The Final Poetry Project will be evaluated as a summative assessment.
5. Closure: 18 Minutes

The instructor will ask the following questions:


o What does it mean to belong?
o How does learning about ourselves teach us about others?
o How can one utilize life experiences as a foundation for creative and expressive
thinking?

Part II:
Daily Lesson Plans

Why are you trying so hard to fit in when you were born to stand out?
Ian Wallace

Day 1 Finding My Place


Roses are red, violets are blue, I love poetry and I hope you will, too!
Context: The Roses are red, violets are blue, I love poetry and I hope you will, too! plan is
the initial lesson that introduces the Finding My Place thematic unit of belonging. To begin our
journey, each student will have an opportunity to explore and discuss several key terms that
propel the overall significance of the unit. In addition, each student will also be given the chance
to exercise Twenty-First Century technological skills while searching the internet for
contemporary pieces of poetry. The main goal of this lesson is to recognize the importance of
belonging and to make the art of poetry appealing for young learners.
Grade Level: Sixth
Primary Instructional Objectives:
Cognitive
GO SO
2. Investigate the perspectives of others.
2.1 Recognize perspectives of others
4. Interpret and respond to material from various sources.
4.2 Poems
4.4 Technology
Affective
6. Participate in classroom activities.
6.3 Participate in class discussion
6.4 Listen attentively to others
7. Value his/her individual perspective.
7.2 Share perspective with others
Performance
9. Compose original writing.
9.1 Write in journal
Common Core State Standard:

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.6.1
o Engage effectively in a range of collaborative discussions (one-on-one, in groups,
and teacher-led) with diverse partners on grade 6 topics, texts, and issues,
building on others' ideas and expressing their own clearly.

Materials Needed:
Laptop
Projector
Presentation
Laptop for each student
Internet access for each student
Teacher example
List of pre-approved websites for Poetry WebQuest
Online Cork Board
Time: 50 minutes
Instructional Procedure:
1. Bridge/Introduction/Anticipatory Set 8 Minutes

Free-write: What does it mean to belong?


Write-Pair-Share: The students will discuss their responses with a partner. The instructor
will then ask for volunteers to share their thoughts.
2. Instruction 12 Minutes

After everyone who wanted to volunteer has finished, the teacher will introduce the
theme of the unit and why it is important for students to understand and grasp the concept
of belonging.
Class Discussion: Other questions that will be asked by the teacher:
o What is a poem?
o Why is poetry written?
o Why is poetry important?
o What makes a poem interesting or exciting to read?
Ideally, the students will provide responses to each of the questions listed above. After a
brief discussion, the instructor will introduce the content focus of the thematic unit,
which would be the concept of poetry.
3. Activities with Directions 25 Minutes

In hopes of sparking interest and excitement, the students will participate in a Poetry
WebQuest. Each student will be given access to a laptop, in addition to a list of
websites to search. Every student will be challenged to discover a poem they identify
with or enjoy.
The instructor will also provide an example for the students.
4. Closure 5 Minutes

Exit Slip: Each student will post a sticky note onto the Online Cork Board (Linoit.com)
that has a link to the poem they discovered. Below each link, every student will also
write a few sentences describing why they chose their particular poem.
o Link to the Online Cork Board:
http://linoit.com/users/KelseyHoover3/canvases/Poetry%20WebQuest
To conclude, each student will place their laptop back onto the laptop cart and pack up
their belongings.
* NOTE: The teacher will print off each students poem and hand them out the following day.
Evaluation: Formative Assessment: The instructor will be roaming about the classroom and
stopping frequently to listen to conversations and/or engage with the students.
Appendix of Materials Needed: The presentation and handouts needed for this lesson are
included.

Poetry WebQuest
Listed below are two websites that you can use for the Poetry WebQuest.
When you arrive at a website, click on the Browse Poems and Poets tab
and begin your search for a poem you identify with or just simply enjoy!
Happy hunting!
http://www.poets.org/
http://www.poetryfoundation.org/
Listed below is the link to the Online Cork Board where you will post the
link to your poem. In addition to posting the link, you will write two-three
sentences describing why you chose your particular poem.
http://linoit.com/users/KelseyHoover3/canvases/Poetry%20WebQuest

Day 2 Finding My Place


Wait, who said that?
Context: Throughout the Wait, who said that? lesson plan, each student will have the
opportunity to determine the speaker(s) of various poems. While analyzing each piece, the
students will be given the chance to work individually and collaboratively to reach a common
understanding. The theme of belonging is evident in this lesson because the students will be
examining several poems together in hopes of defining a specific speaker. Each student will be
able to realize that different types of people feel, experience, and write poetry about different
things. In addition, the lesson relies heavily on group work and discussion; therefore every
student will be given the opportunity to insert him/herself into the conversations and let his/her
voice be heard.
Grade Level: Sixth
Primary Instructional Objectives:
Cognitive
GO SO
1. Analyze various forms of poetic devices.
1.1 Speaker
2. Investigate the perspectives of others.
2.1 Recognize perspectives of others
2.2 Identify elements that shape perspectives
3. Develop critical thinking skills when reading.
3.1 Identify perspectives of characters in a text
3.2 Explore feelings of characters
4. Interpret and respond to material from various sources.
4.2 Poems
Affective
6. Participate in classroom activities.
6.1 Compose in-class writing
6.2 Compose out of class writing
6.3 Participate in class discussion
6.4 Listen attentively to others
7. Value his/her individual perspective.
7.2 Share perspective with others
8. Work cooperatively with others.
8.1 Brainstorm as a group
Performance
9. Compose original writing.
9.1 Write in journal

Common Core State Standards:

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL6.1
o Engage effectively in a range of collaborative discussions (one-on-one, in groups,
and teacher-led) with diverse partners on grade 6 topics, texts, and issues,
building on others ideas and expressing their own.
CSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.6.1
o Cite textual evidence to support analysis of what the text sys explicitly as well as
inferences drawn from the text.
Materials Needed:
Laptop
Projector
Internet access
Presentation
Guided notes handout for each student
Individual copies of each students chosen poem
Swimming Upstream Middle School Poems by Kristine OConnell George
Time: 50 minutes
Instructional Procedure:
1. Bridge/Introduction/Anticipatory Set 5 Minutes

Who is the speaker in this poem?


o The Other Me, by Kristine OConnell George: Found in Swimming Upstream,
Middle School Poems
Write-Pair-Share: The students will discuss their responses with a partner. The instructor
will then ask for volunteers to share their thoughts.
2. Instruction 15 Minutes

A presentation will be created introduce the following:


o Speaker: The speaker is the voice behind the poem the person we imagine to be
speaking. Its important to note that the speaker is not the poet. Even if the poem
is biographical, you should treat the speaker as a fictional creation, because the
writer is choosing what to say about himself. Besides, even poets dont speak in
poetry in their everyday lives although it would be cool if they did. *Found at
http://bit.ly/14Itl8N
o After reading a poem, try to describe the person who is speaking to you in general
terms.

This is an inference; try to explain what you know about the person
talking based on the words they use. (Be sure to discuss the definition and
significance of diction/word choice.)
Example: Does the speaker seem to be young or old?
The students will be given a shell of notes, similar to a guided notes activity, and will
be required to fill in the necessary items.
3. Activities with Directions 20 Minutes

Also provided in the presentation will be several examples that will be discussed as a
class and in groups.
o What Id Cook for My Teacher, by Bruce Lansky (as a class)
o I Dont Belong, by Katie Chambers (as a group, then discuss as a class)
o Whatif, by Shel Silverstein (as a group, then discuss as a class)
4. Closure 10 Minutes

To conclude the presentation, the students will be given a printed copy of the poem they
posted to the Online Cork Board the day before.
Homework: The students will be asked to determine the speaker of the poem they chose.
In addition to identifying the speaker, each student will be required to write a paragraph
describing his/her rationale. The students will be encouraged to use evidence from the
poem, just as practiced during the class and group discussions.
Begin reading aloud Swimming Upstream Middle School Poems, by Kristine OConnell
George
Evaluation: Formative Assessment: The instructor will be roaming about the classroom and
stopping frequently to listen to conversations and/or engage with the students. The homework
assignment will also be evaluated as a formative assessment.
Appendix of Materials Needed: The presentation and handouts needed for this lesson are
included.

Class Notes
Wait, who said that?
Speaker:
______________________________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________________________

After reading a poem, try to describe:


______________________________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________________________

This is an __________________; try to explain what you know about the person talking
based on _____________________________________________________________________.
Example:
______________________________________________________________________________

Diction:
______________________________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________________________

What Id Cook For My Teacher, by Bruce Lansky


If I cooked hot lunch for my teacher,
I would start out with rattlesnake stew.
Then Id serve her a centipede salad
And a tall glass of milk mixed with glue.
Next, a seaweed and jellyfish sandwich,
For dessert, an a-chooberry pie.
When she finally finds out what shes eaten,
I hope the old bat doesnt die.
Who is the speaker?

Day 3 Finding My Place


Its not what you say; its how you say it, my dear.
Context: The main objective of the Its not what you say; its how you say it, my dear. lesson
is to assist every students understanding of mood and tone. Included throughout the lesson are
several videos and poems that will be examined and discussed. Each of the videos and poems
used in the lesson are great examples of the unit theme of belonging. When determining the
mood and tone of a piece, one must first examine the speaker and his/her thoughts and/or
experiences. Each student will have the opportunity to explore through various pieces of
literature and analyze and gather information that is necessary for deciding the mood and tone of
a particular work. In addition, the lesson relies heavily on group work and discussion; therefore
every student will be given the opportunity to insert him/herself into the conversations and let
his/her voice be heard.
Grade Level: Sixth
Primary Instructional Objectives:
Cognitive
GO SO
1. Analyze various forms of poetic devices.
1.1 Speaker
1.2 Mood
1.3 Tone
2. Investigate the perspectives of others.
2.1 Recognize perspectives of others
2.2 Identify elements that shape perspectives
3. Develop critical thinking skills when reading.
3.1 Identify perspectives of characters in a text
3.2 Explore feelings of characters
4. Interpret and respond to material from various sources.
4.1 Photos
4.2 Poems
4.3 Videos
Affective
6. Participate in classroom activities.
6.1 Compose in-class writing
6.3 Participate in class discussion
6.4 Listen attentively to others
7. Value his/her individual perspective.
7.2 Share perspective with others
8. Work cooperatively with others.
8.1 Brainstorm as a group

Performance
9. Compose original writing.
9.1 Write in journal
Common Core State Standards:

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.6.1
o Cite textual evidence to support analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as
inferences drawn from the text.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.6.4
o Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including
figurative and connotative meanings; analyze the impact of a specific word choice
on meaning and tone
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.6.7
o Compare and contrast the experience of reading a story, drama, or poem to
listening to or viewing an audio, video, or live version of the text, including
contrasting what they "see" and "hear" when reading the text to what they
perceive when they listen or watch.
Materials Needed:
Laptop
Projector
Internet access
Presentation
Guided notes handout for each student
A copy of The Road Not Taken, by Robert Frost for each student
Swimming Upstream Middle School Poems by Kristine OConnell George
Time: 50 Minutes
1. Bridge/Introduction/Anticipatory Set 10 Minutes

These photos of Cinderellas Castle were taken at Disney World. The same castle is
pictured in both photos. How does each picture makes you feel? Write 3-4 sentences
describing each photograph.
o http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/5/52/Cinderella_Castle_2013_W
ade.jpg (Normal Cinderella Castle)
o http://www.davewilsonphotography.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/06/DisneyWorld-June-2010-242And8more.jpg (Scary Cinderella Castle)
Write-Pair-Share: The students will discuss their responses with a partner. The instructor
will then ask for volunteers to share their thoughts.
* NOTE: While the students are completing the warm-up, the instructor will collect the
homework from the night before.

2. Instruction 20 Minutes

A presentation will be created to introduce the following:


o Definitions and examples of mood and tone.
The students will be given a shell of notes, similar to a guided notes activity, and will
be required to fill in the necessary items.
View this video: http://youtu.be/jDUhDV-72S0 [4:13] (The instructor can skip around in
the video to conserve time.)
o Discuss how the music in the video complimented each facial expression shown.
View the following videos:
o http://youtu.be/fuWf9fP-A-U [4:14] (Begin video at 0:43)
o http://youtu.be/2T5_0AGdFic [1:06]
Write/Pair/Share: The students will answer the following questions and then discuss their
responses with a partner.
o How is the mood changed from the first video to the second one? Be sure to
provide evidence to support your claims.
o How does the tone help change the mood of the first video to the second? Be sure
to provide evidence to support your claims.
After each pair has had the opportunity to chat, the instructor will ask for volunteers to
share.
3. Activities with Directions 15 Minutes

Read aloud The Road Not Taken, by Robert Frost in an optimistic tone.
o Each student will be given a copy of the poem.
As a group, the students will answer the following questions:
o What kind of mood did this poem put you in?
o What was the tone of the speaker who was reading the poem?
View this video: http://youtu.be/ie2Mspukx14 [1:05]
o Class discussion:
What kind of mood did the poem put you in now?
What was the tone of the speaker who was reading the poem?
How would you describe the speaker?
Did your answers change from the first read aloud to the second? Why or
why not?
4. Closure 5 Minutes

Exit Slip: On a scrap sheet of paper complete the following:


o Tell me about three things you learned today!
o Do you have any unanswered questions or lingering thoughts about the material
covered in class today?

If time permits: Continue reading aloud Swimming Upstream Middle School Poems, by
Kristine OConnell George.
Evaluation: Formative Assessment: The instructor will be roaming about the classroom and
stopping frequently to listen to conversations and/or engage with the students. The homework
assignment and exit slip will also be evaluated as a formative assessment.
Appendix of Materials Needed: The presentation and handouts needed for this lesson are
included.

Class Notes
Its not what you say; its how you say it, my dear.
Mood:
______________________________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________________________
Example: _____________________________________________________________________
Tone:
______________________________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________________________
Example: _____________________________________________________________________

Mary Poppins Videos:


1. How was the mood changed from the first video to the second? Be sure to provide evidence to
support your claims.

2. How does tone affect the mood of each video? Be sure to provide evidence to support your
claims.

The Road Not Taken


By: Robert Frost
Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;
Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,
And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.
I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

Day 4 Finding My Place


The Bigger Picture
Context: The purpose of The Bigger Picture lesson plan is to help each student feel more
comfortable when identifying the theme(s) of a particular work. Several photos, videos, and
poems have been compiled within this lesson to portray and propel the theme of belonging.
While viewing each of the examples, every student will be able to notice similarities connecting
all of the pieces. The items used in this lesson were purposely picked to represent the nature of
finding ones place. In addition, the lesson relies heavily on group work and discussion;
therefore every student will be given the opportunity to insert him/herself into the conversations
and let his/her voice be heard.
Grade Level: Sixth
Primary Instructional Objectives:
Cognitive
GO SO
1. Analyze various forms of poetic devices.
1.1 Speaker
1.2 Mood
1.3 Tone
1.4 Theme
2. Investigate the perspectives of others.
2.1 Recognize perspectives of others
2.2 Identify elements that shape perspectives
3. Develop critical thinking skills when reading.
3.1 Identify perspectives of characters in a text
3.2 Explore feelings of characters
4. Interpret and respond to material from various sources.
4.1 Photos
4.2 Poems
4.3 Videos
Affective
6. Participate in classroom activities.
6.1 Compose in-class writing
6.2 Compose out of class writing
6.3 Participate in class discussion
6.4 Listen attentively to others
7. Value his/her individual perspective.
7.2 Share perspective with others
8. Work cooperatively with others.
8.1 Brainstorm as a group
8.2 Make choices as a group

Performance
9. Compose original writing.
9.1 Write in journal
10. Present material orally.
10.2 Use effective speaking skills
Common Core State Standard:

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RL.6.1
o Cite textual evidence to support analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as
inferences drawn from the text.
Materials Needed:
Laptop
Projector
Presentation
Internet access
Guided notes handout for each student
A copy of the lyrics from Roar, by Katy Perry for each student
A copy of The Sneetches, by Dr. Seuss for each student
Swimming Upstream Middle School Poems by Kristine OConnell George
Time: 50 Minutes
Instructional Procedure:
1. Bridge/Introduction/Anticipatory Set 8 Minutes

What do all of these photos have in common?


o http://www.adorama.com/alc/files/17279e6b9ab32ea3f38e9b2a52587f25.jpg (A
girl and her dog)
o http://www.weddingwindow.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/justmarried.jpg (Just married photo)
o http://www.adriannapaige.com/wpcontent/uploads/2012/12/AdriannaTeerlinkbffhands.jpg (Best friends)
Write-Pair-Share: The students will discuss their responses with a partner. The instructor
will then ask for volunteers to share their thoughts.
2. Instruction 28 Minutes

A presentation will be created to introduce the following:


o Definition of theme
o Helpful questions to consider when determining theme(s):
Does this remind me of anything else I have read?
Is there a lesson to learn?

Is there an emotion to understand?


Is there something to appreciate?
The students will be given a shell of notes, similar to a guided notes activity, and will
be required to fill in the necessary items.
View this video: http://youtu.be/5ucBHUHV9sU [3:48]
o Each student will be given a copy of the lyrics to Roar, by Katy Perry
o Class discussion:
Why was the song written?
What is the message the singer wants the audience to understand?
What is the theme of the song?
View this video: http://youtu.be/qPhOZzsi_6Q [12:10] (Begin video at 0:49 and end at
11:44)
o Each student will be given a copy of The Sneetches, by Dr. Seuss.
3. Activities with Directions 10 Minutes

Competition: As a group, the students will try to determine as many themes as possible
that can be found in The Sneetches, by Dr. Seuss. The themes must be correct. Any
themes that are questionable will need textual evidence to serve as proof. The group who
discovers the most accurate themes will win a prize.
4. Closure 4 Minutes

Homework: The students will be asked to determine the theme of the poem they chose on
the first day of the unit. In addition to identifying the theme(s), each student will be
required to write a paragraph describing his/her rationale. The students will be
encouraged to use evidence from the poem, just as practiced during the class and group
discussions.
If time permits: Continue reading aloud Swimming Upstream Middle School Poems, by
Kristine OConnell George.
Evaluation: Formative Assessment: The instructor will be roaming about the classroom and
stopping frequently to listen to conversations and/or engage with the students. The homework
assignment will also be evaluated as a formative assessment.
Appendix of Materials Needed:

The presentation and handouts needed for this lesson are included.

Class Notes
The Bigger Picture
Theme:
______________________________________________________________________________
______________________________________________________________________________
Helpful questions to consider when determining theme(s):
1.

2.

3.

4.

Roar, by Katy Perry


1. Why was the song written?

2. What is the message the singer wants the audience to understand?

3. What is the theme of the song?

"Roar"
By: Katy Perry
I used to bite my tongue and hold my breath
Scared to rock the boat and make a mess
So I sat quietly, agreed politely
I guess that I forgot I had a choice
I let you push me past the breaking point
I stood for nothing, so I fell for everything
You held me down, but I got up (HEY!)
Already brushing off the dust
You hear my voice, you hear that sound
Like thunder gonna shake the ground
You held me down, but I got up (HEY!)
Get ready 'cause Ive had enough
I see it all, I see it now
[Chorus]
I got the eye of the tiger, a fighter, dancing
through the fire
'Cause I am a champion and youre gonna
hear me roar
Louder, louder than a lion
'Cause I am a champion and youre gonna
hear me roar
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Youre gonna hear me roar
Now Im floating like a butterfly
Stinging like a bee I earned my stripes
I went from zero, to my own hero
You held me down, but I got up (HEY!)
Already brushing off the dust
You hear my voice, you hear that sound
Like thunder gonna shake the ground
You held me down, but I got up (HEY!)
Get ready cause Ive had enough

I see it all, I see it now


[Chorus]
I got the eye of the tiger, a fighter, dancing
through the fire
Cause I am a champion and youre gonna
hear me roar
Louder, louder than a lion
Cause I am a champion and youre gonna
hear me roar
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Youre gonna hear me roar
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
You'll hear me roar
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
You're gonna hear me roar...
Ro-oar, ro-oar, ro-oar, ro-oar, ro-oar
I got the eye of the tiger, a fighter, dancing
through the fire
Cause I am a champion and youre gonna
hear me roar
Louder, louder than a lion
Cause I am a champion and youre gonna
hear me roar
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Youre gonna hear me roar
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
You'll hear me roar
Oh oh oh oh oh oh
You're gonna hear me roar...

The Sneetches
By: Dr. Seuss
Now, the Star-Belly SneetchesHad bellies with stars.
The Plain-Belly Sneetches-Had none upon thars.
Those stars werent so big. They were really so small.
You might think such a thing wouldnt matter at all.
But, because they had stars, all the Star-Belly Sneetches
Would brag, Were the best kind of Sneetch on the beaches.
With their snoots in the air, they would sniff and theyd snort
Well have nothing to do with the Plain-Belly sort!
And whenever they met some, when they were out walking,
Theyd hike right on past them without even talking.
When the Star-Belly children went out to play ball,
Could a Plain- Belly get in the game? Not at all.
You only could play if your bellies had stars
And the Plain-Belly children had none upon thars.
When the Star-Belly Sneetches had frankfurter roasts
Or picnics or parties or marshmallow toasts,
They never invited the Plain-Belly Sneetches.
They left them out cold, in the dark of the beaches.
They kept them away. Never let them come near.
And thats how they treated them year after year.
Then ONE day, seemswhile the Plain-Belly Sneetches
Were moping and doping alone on the beaches,
Just sitting there wishing their bellies had stars
A stranger zipped up in the strangest of cars!

My friends, he announced in a voice clear and keen,


My name is Sylvester McMonkey McBean.
And Ive heard of your troubles. Ive heard youre unhappy.
But I can fix that. Im the Fix-it-Up Chappie.
Ive come here to help you. I have what you need.
And my prices are low. And I work at great speed.
And my work is one hundred per cent guaranteed!

Then, quickly Sylvester McMonkey McBean


Put together a very peculiar machine.
And he said, You want stars like a Star-Belly Sneetch?
My friends, you can have them for three dollars each!
Just pay me your money and hop right aboard!
So they clambered inside. Then the big machine roared
And it klonked. And it bonked. And it jerked. And it berked
And it bopped them about. But the thing really worked!
When the Plain-Belly Sneetches popped out, they had stars!
They actually did. They had stars upon thars!
Then they yelled at the ones who had stars at the start,
Were exactly like you! You cant tell us apart.
Were all just the same, now, you snooty old smarties!
And now we can go to your frankfurter parties.
Good grief! groaned the ones who had stars at the first.
Were still the best Sneetches and they are the worst.
But, now, how in the world will we know, they all frowned,
If which kind is what, or the other way round?
Then came McBean with a very sly wink.
And he said, Things are not quite as bad as you think.
So you dont know whos who. That is perfectly true.
But come with me, friends. Do you know what Ill do?
Ill make you, again, the best Sneetches on beaches
And all it will cost you is ten dollars eaches.
Belly stars are no longer in style, said McBean.
What you need is a trip through my Star-off Machine.
This wondrous contraption will take off your stars
So you wont look like Sneetches who have them on thars.
And that handy machine Working very precisely
Removed all the stars from their tummies quite nicely.
Then, with snoots in the air, they paraded about
And they opened their beaks and they let out a shout,
We know who is who! Now there isnt a doubt.
The best kind of Sneetches are Sneetches without!
Then, of course, those with stars all got frightfully mad.
To be wearing a star now was frightfully bad.
Then, of course, old Sylvester McMonkey McBean
Invited them into his star-off machine.

Then, of course from THEN on, as you probably guess,


Things really got into a horrible mess.
All the rest of that day, on those wild screaming beaches,
The fix-it-up Chappie kept fixing up Sneetches.
Off again! On Again! In again! Out again!
Through the machines they raced round and about again,
Changing their stars every minute or two.
They kept paying money. They kept running through
Until neither the Plain nor the Star-Bellies knew
Whether this one was that oneor that one was this one
Or which one was what one or what one was who.
Then, when every last cent
Of their money was spent,
The Fix-it-Up Chappie packed up
And he went.
And he laughed as he drove
In his car up the beach,
They never will learn.
No. You cant teach a Sneetch!
But McBean was quite wrong. Im quite happy to say
That the Sneetches got really quite smart on that day,
The day they decided that Sneetches are Sneetches
And no kind of Sneetch is the best on the beaches
That day, all the Sneetches forgot about stars
And whether they had one, or not, upon thars.

Part III:
Evaluation

Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't
matter, and those who matter don't mind.
Bernard M. Baruch

Evaluation
Throughout my career in the College of Education at North Carolina State University, I
have had the opportunity to develop a better understanding of the purpose, creation, and
evaluation of assessments in the classroom. Thus far in my college career, I believe that the
negative connotations that have been associated with the term assessment have deteriorated its
sole objective. Assessments are given to students with the intention of measuring
comprehension. The motive of assessments is to evaluate the level of mastery and determine if
the teaching methods and learning strategies used in the classroom are complying with the needs
of each student. Though the purpose of assessments has been morphed into a cynical task, the
measurement of knowledge must be evaluated in order to ensure that growth and progression
continually occur.
In my future classroom, I plan to use assessments as a tool to generate learning. I
strongly believe that formative assessments, homework, and participation should be used in the
classroom however, should not be weighted in the calculation of the final grade. A students
overall score should reflect the level of mastery he/she has achieved and not mirror the failures
and reattempts along the way to success. The purpose of assessments is to confirm that
comprehension is being accomplished and the relationship between teacher and student is
existent and efficient. Educators must constantly reflect and self-assess in order to improve the
continual cycle of assessment. Though the final aspect of the cycle concludes with a summative
assessment, the cycle is never really complete. There are always opportunities to reteach,
rediscover, and redefine.
To effectively measure the development and growth of knowledge throughout the
classroom, an educator must assess before, during, and after instructional time. He/she must
determine what the students know, check for understanding, and evaluate the level of retention.
This process should occur daily to ensure that the students are recollecting past material and
comprehending the new material. Though there are not any specific guidelines that distinguish
the most effective methods of assessment that can occur in the classroom, an educator has the
flexibility to be creative and thoughtful so that each student feels comfortable sharing their
knowledge in a safe, caring environment that does not belittle or mock the various levels of
comprehension.
Methods of Evaluation:
Formative:

Exit slip
Warm-Up responses
Classroom discussions
Overheard conversations
Homework assignments
In-class assignments
Active participation
Poetry Analysis activity
Poetry Practice activity

Summative:

Final Poetry Project


Presentation

Part IV:
Works Cited List and
Reflective Addendum

Those who follow the crowd usually get lost in it.


Rick Warren

A. Works Cited List


Poems:
Black, H. (2008). Winter. Retrieved December 1, 2014, from
http://endicottstudio.typepad.com/poetrylist/winter-by-holly-black.html
Chambers, K. (11 July 2012). I Dont Belong. Retrieved December 1, 2014, from
http://bit.ly/1yF111b
Frost, R. (1923). Nothing Gold Can Stay. Retrieved December 1, 2014, from
www.poets.org/poetorg/poem/nothing-gold-can-stay
Frost, R. (n.d.). The Road Not Taken. Retrieved December 1, 2014, from
www.poetryfoundation.org/poem/173536
George, K. (2002). Swimming Upstream: Middle School Poems. New York: Clarion Books.
Lansky, B. (2000). What Id Cook for My Teacher. Retrieved December 1, 2014, from
www.poetryteachers.com/schoolpoems/whatidcook.html
Nathan, J. (2010) The American Eagle. Retrieved December 1, 2014, from
http://incredibleassemblies.com/PunOETRY.html
Ode, E. (2007). Autumn is Orange. Retrieved December 1, 2014, from
http://www.gigglepoetry.com/poetryclassdetail.aspx?LessonPlanID=38
Silverstein, S. (1981). A Light in the Attic. Harper & Row.
Seuss, Dr. (28 Aug 1961). The Sneetches and Other Stories. Random House.
Soto, G. (n.d.). Ode to Pablos Tennis Shoes. Retrieved December 1, 2014, from
http://teacher.scholastic.com/lessonplans/unit_poetryslam_ode.pdf
Williams, W. (1962). This Is Just To Say. Retrieved December 1, 2014, from
http://www.poets.org/poetsorg/poem/just-say
Yardy, A. (2011). Naming the Seasons. Retrieved December 1, 2014, from http://bit.ly/1tJoDwb

YouTube Videos:
Antivo, P. (15 Sept 2013). Roar by Katy Perry. Retrieved December 1, 2014, from
http://youtu.be/5ucBHUHV9sU
AWetBlackBough. (25 Jul 2010). Robert Frost reads The Road Not Taken. Retrieved December
1, 2014, from http://youtu.be/ie2Mspukx14

Freedogshampoo. (1 Jul 2007). (Original 1964) Mary Poppins Theatrical Trailer. Retrieved
December 1, 2014, from http://youtu.be/fuWf9fP-A-U
Hammond, M. (18 Apr 2008). Tone & Mood Words. Retrieved December 1, 2014, from
http://youtu.be/jDUhDV-72S0
Rule. C. (8 Oct 2006). THE ORIGINAL Scary 'Mary Poppins' Recut Trailer. Retrieved
December 1, 2014, from http://youtu.be/2T5_0AGdFic
Tron612. (1 Jun 2011). Sneetches. Retrieved December 1, 2014, from
http://youtu.be/qPhOZzsi_6Q

Photos:
Retrieved December 1, 2014, from
http://www.adorama.com/alc/files/17279e6b9ab32ea3f38e9b2a52587f25.jpg
Retrieved December 1, 2014, from http://www.adriannapaige.com/wpcontent/uploads/2012/12/AdriannaTeerlinkbffhands.jpg
Retrieved December 1, 2014, from http://www.davewilsonphotography.com/wpcontent/uploads/2010/06/Disney-World-June-2010-242And8more.jpg
Retrieved December 1, 2014, from
http://www.freeduh.com/wpcontent/uploads/2011/03/dear_diary_guess_what_i_did_today.jpg
Retrieved December 1, 2014, from
http://www.highsnobiety.com/news/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/dogs-swimming-pool1.jpg
Retrieved December 1, 2014, from
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/5/52/Cinderella_Castle_2013_Wade.jpg
Retrieved December 1, 2014, from
http://www.weddingwindow.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/just-married.jpg

Handouts:
Evans, D. Roar by Katy Perry. Retrieved December 1, 2014, from
http://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/katyperry/roar.html

Course Texts:
Atwell, N. (1987). In the Middle: Writing, Reading, and Learning with Adolescents. Upper
Montclair, N.J.: Boynton/Cook.

Bushman, J., & Haas, K. (1993). Using Young Adult Literature in the English Classroom. New
York: Merrill.
Milner, J., & Milner, L. (1999). Bridging English (2nd ed.). Upper Saddle River, N.J.: Merrill.

B. Reflective Addendum
Dear Reader,
I appreciate you taking the time to look over the Finding My Place thematic unit plan I
have created. Although you have read through several objectives, goals, and lesson plans, I
would like to take a moment to explain how the concept of my unit began. As I started my
observations in my cooperating teachers classroom, I was drawn to the language arts
curriculum. In the sixth grade classroom, each student is just beginning to advance their
understanding of literature, and I felt my interests would be more geared to a unit on poetry
rather than a unit on Ancient Egypt. I was very happy to have the opportunity create an entire
unit on poetry because it is one of my favorite concepts in language arts. However, my
cooperating teacher informed me that the students in past years did not enjoy learning about or
creating poetry. Instead of becoming discouraged, I was determined to craft a unit full of
opportunities for each student to fall in love with poetry. The theme of belonging seemed to
make perfect sense for my goals. Each student in the middle grades struggle with the concepts of
poetry and the mystery of identity, so I challenged myself to tackle these two issues in one unit!
One of the more prominent strengths of the Finding My Place unit, in my opinion, would
be the numerous opportunities available for student-centered learning. Throughout the unit map
I have developed, each daily lesson plan has a small instruction time frame. Majority of each
class session is devoted to individual, partnered, and/or group work. The students are given
several chances to practice and master the content while exercising collaborative and friendship
skills. Another strength that I feel propels the Finding My Place unit is the incorporation of
outside sources. I have included many poems, photos, and videos throughout the daily lesson
plans in hopes of engaging each type of student. The differentiation of materials were purposely
embedded throughout the unit map as a way to give every student the opportunity to connect
with, as well as to relate to the material being discussed and exercised.
If I were given more time to craft my unit plan, I would certainly try to find more
relevant poems to use as examples during each lesson. Though I did not expect it, the discovery
of meaningful and relatable poetry is often hard to uncover when thinking about interests of sixth
grade students. Because of this, the examples I was able to use in the unit map were not entirely
connected to theme of belonging. Another limitation I faced while creating the Finding My
Place unit was time constraints. As you know, this unit has been mapped out for three weeks of
instruction. I chose to include many examples and interesting activities, and the fifty-minute
class sessions were just too short. If I am able to teach my unit plan next semester, I am fully
aware that a three-week unit on poetry may not be reasonable, but because I have included so
many items, I feel that it would not be a huge issue to eliminate some aspects if time proved to
be problem.
During my student teaching experience next semester, I hope I can teach the Finding My
Place thematic unit plan. I would pay practically close attention to student engagement and
relationships within my classroom to ensure that the unit is effective. In addition, I would also
try to keep in mind the variety of student interests when searching for poetry examples and/or
videos to use in class. However, the unit plan that I have presented to you encompasses my best
work. I feel as if I have created an appealing unit that offers many opportunities for the
expansion of knowledge. On a scale of one to four, I would reward the quality of my thematic

unit plan with four. Each of the items required for this assignment have been thoroughly
completed and created with the best of intentions.
To conclude, I would like to offer a piece of advice to the future students who will be
completing their very own thematic unit plan: Do not procrastinate. This assignment is a large
piece that requires a tremendous amount of planning, organization, and dedication. Though the
requirements for creating the Integrated Thematic Unit Project for ECI 430/435 seem massive
and exhausting, the end result always reflects the effort you put into the assignment. However, if
I were able to change anything about the assignment, I would eliminate the Works Cited
requirement in Part IV. In my opinion, I feel as if this section of my unit plan was unnecessary
and monotonous. Although the assignment should not include APA formatted references, each
website, photo, book, etc. should be internally cited with a hyperlink, author and title, etc.
Thank you again for taking the time to read through the Finding My Place thematic unit
plan. I hope each of my future students come to enjoy poetry and begin discovering who they
want to be throughout the process.

Sincerely,

Kelsey Hoover
December 2, 2014

Part V:
Process Materials

What matters most is not 'what' you are, but 'who' you are.
DaShanne Stokes

Process Materials
Throughout the process of planning, organizing, and crafting the Finding My Place
thematic unit plan, I have been able to discuss my thoughts and ideas with several of my peers
and both of my instructors. Although I do not have any tangible drafts or revisions to include in
this section, I have received verbal feedback concerning the development of my unit plan. On
several occasions during ECI 430/435, I have been able to obtain helpful advice from Crystal and
Clarice, in addition to many of my classmates.