Young adult author Kate Messner inspired one of my favorite back-to-school poetry projects for middle schoolers! I’ve updated my post about this activity for the 2021-2022 school term with updated links and a free PDF presentation to download. I hope you try this project. It’s a keeper!
A back-to-school poem perfect for the first day (updated 8/21)
“The Sometimes Poem” was one of my favorite ways to go back to school with my middle schoolers.
I used this project for two years with sixth-graders and loved it both times before I changed jobs to my current high school position.
The Sometimes Poem includes three skills: poetry techniques, revision, and submitting for publication. I credit children’s and YA author, Kate Messner, for her inspiration and ideas for this project.
In 2016, I attended the Write To Learn Conference and sat in on Messner’s presentation on revision strategies. Her presentation allowed the teachers in attendance to create and revise their own “Sometimes” poems.
Here’s how I presented this lesson that’s based on Messner’s slideshow and her excellent book, Real Revision. I tweaked Messner’s slideshow quite a bit for…
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