Looking for a fun activity to use in October? How about having your students write a poem on the back of a Halloween image they can color? I’ve even got a good vocabulary list to go with it. Here are the handouts:
- Mask Poem Handout
- Poetry Vocab List Halloween Student Copy
- Halloween Poetry Vocabulary List With Definitions
For students who, for religious or other reasons, don’t celebrate Halloween, have them design a Pilgrim’s face. They can write a “harvest” poem instead of a Halloween poem.
You might wonder why there’s so little room for the poem on the handout. One of the problems my 7th graders sometimes have is comprehending the brevity of poetry in comparison to prose. They often write rhyming “paragraphs” instead of poems. That’s very common with kids at the middle school level.
So the lines for the poem are deliberately short, to encourage students to make their lines of poetry short, concise, and poetic, using strong imagery and good word choice.
There’s also a section where the teacher can write in his/her poetic requirements. Some requirements might include:
- Capitalize the first word of each line
- Create at least two stanzas
- Correctly capitalize your title
- At least two lines must rhyme with each other
- Use an onomatopoeia in your poem
- Include a simile or metaphor in your poem
- Highlight a line that uses figurative language
Before you give this assignment, you might want to click on the “Poetry” heading in the menu at the top of the page. Go over the “Three Basic Rules of Traditional Poetry” with your students, so they can see how poetry differs from pose, especially in traditional poems.
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