Slow Chat for Students on Amanda Gorman’s Inaugural Poem

Connect your students with other classes nationwide to learn together and discuss this history-making poem by U.S. Youth Poet Laureate Amanda Gorman. Here’s what you need to know to make it happen.

When: Friday, Jan. 29

Start time: 8am EST / 7am CST

Moderator: @MelAlterSmith

This will be a slow chat. We will have students active at different times of the day. For the last slow chat my class participated in, I had them join in the chat at the current question, then go back and answer the previous questions. They were also required to schedule tweets using Tweetdeck to answer the rest of the questions posted after class-time. Don’t forget to include the #TeachLivingPoets hashtag so we can all see each others’ tweets! 

Students can participate whether they are virtual or face-to-face, synchronous or asynchronous.

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Amanda Gorman Inauguration Poem Lessons

On January 20, 2021, President Joe Biden and Vice-President Kamala Harris were sworn into office. At the Inauguration ceremony, U.S. Youth Poet Laureate Amanda Gorman made history in being the youngest Inaugural poet. Here are several lessons, all shared with their creators’ permission, to help you teach Amanda Gorman’s poem and inauguration poetry with your students.

Thank you Carrie Mattern, Susan Barber, Melissa Alter Smith, Chanea Bond, Teresa Floch, and Pernille Ripp for sharing your work. A full text of the poem can be found here.

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New Hyperdoc for Rudy Francisco

Today’s post comes from guest author Kelly Lawlor. Kelly is a high school English teacher with 10 years experience teaching grades 7-12. She started her career in Pennsylvania where she graduated from college. Currently, she lives in Massachusetts with her family and 75lb. boxer. Kelly does her best to support, encourage, and challenge students through different hands-on learning opportunities. She sometimes collaborates with other disciplines on a project-based learning goal and sometimes utilizes technology to practice blogging or creating digital portfolios.

Kelly’s hyperdoc takes students through learning about Rudy Francisco as an artist, then though several of his poems. Students will learn the specific inspiration behind some his popular poems, explore the importance of connotation and word play, consider tone and metaphor, and finally write a mentor text poem of their own.

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SZA Workshop Series

Today’s lesson is by guest author Dominique James, daughter of Chicago and Southside sweetheart, graduated Summa Cum Laude from Howard University. She has completed research fellowships at the University of California-Riverside and the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture. After graduation, she was a TRIALS Fellow at Harvard Law School and a University of Chicago HBCU Bridge Scholar. She is a teaching artist at Young Chicago Authors and creates word-based multimedia projects and is a recipient of the 2020 Chicago Artists Coalition Spark Grant and a 2018 Propeller Fund grant from Gallery 400, Threewalls, and The Andy Warhol Foundation. Whether as an event host, performer, or teaching artist, Dominique seeks to inspire celebration and share joy.  
(Photo by Reese Amaru) Visit Dominique’s blog here.

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We’re going on a treasure hunt! Found Poetry

There’s a lot about this Fall that feels particularly heavy.  We started the year remotely. Now, we only see half of our students at a time, the other half on Zoom..  We’re staring at many black boxes on the Zoom screen. We promised students an experiential English class, and yet we can’t play games, we can’t traverse the high and low ropes course….we can’t even get in a circle.  There’s also that sneaky chill in the air reminding us that soon Michigan’s winter will set in.  

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LMS Voice Curriculum Database – New Poetry Resource!

Hello Educators!

My name is Brian Hannon, and I am an English teacher in Alexandria, Virginia. I just wanted to pass along a new resource that I’ve been working on this summer, the LMS Voice Curriculum Database. 

The LMS Voice Curriculum Database is a searchable collection of writing and analytical workshops that focus on poems by a diverse array of socially-engaged artists. Our intent with the creation of this resource – along with providing free poetry materials to educators – was to make space for voices from all communities, especially those that have been historically marginalized or consistently excluded from mainstream curriculums; we hope that the site will give you easier access to these voices and provide you with the tools to make them a more prominent part of your classroom.

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Two Lessons for Hip Hop Verse, Poetry, & Performance: Braggadocio & Voice

Cleveland WinfieldThis lesson is by Grover Cleveland Winfield III, the son of the late Grover C. Winfield, Jr. and Theodora Pollard Winfield. He earned his M.F.A. in Creative Writing, with and emphasis in poetry, from Old Dominion University in May of 2004. Entering his seventeenth year in education, Cleveland Winfield currently teaches English 10 and Cultural Topics: Literature, Writing, & Performance at Rappahannock High School in Warsaw, Virginia. In addition to his teaching duties, Cleveland Winfield serves his school system as the Faculty Athletics Representative for Rappahannock High School and as the chairperson of the Richmond County Public Schools Multicultural Diversity Committee.

Lesson 1: Hip Hop Verse, Poetry, & Performance: Braggadocio

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