My Favorite Poem Project with Robert Pinsky

This is the ninth installment in a series at #TeachLivingPoets. The Poet Laureate Project features a different U.S. Poet Laureate each month during the 2019-2020 school year. Guest author Ann Cox highlights one or two of their poems, suggests activities to use these pieces in the classroom, and touches upon their contributions to the promotion of poetry in America. Ann Cox has over 20 years of experience teaching high school English, including AP Lit, Creative Writing, and Speech. She also spent several years as a teacher consultant for the Illinois State Writing Project.

logoThis month I’m featuring former Poet Laureate Robert Pinsky, who served in the position from 1997-2000. As the nation’s official poet, the Poet Laureate’s task is to increase U.S. citizens’ appreciation for reading and writing poetry. During his term, Robert Pinsky created the Favorite Poem Project, which asked Americans to share their favorite poem with the nation.

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Name Poem

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Family names, nicknames, going by your middle name, common names, cherished names, meaning of names, unique names–these were all up for consideration as students drafted a poem about their name.

Pre-writing

Students wrote their full legal name at the top of a blank sheet of paper and spent a couple minutes making a list of all the names they are called or call themselves, including nicknames, terms of endearment (or other terms), mispronunciations (if applicable), and any information they may possibly know about why their name was chosen for them. Thank you to José Olivarez and The YCA The Lesson for inspiring this prompt and the pre-write!  Continue reading