April is National Poetry Month! Celebrate with a study of nature poetry! Start by reading nature poems. Depending on the age and level of students make a study of the mechanics of poetry and how to write different kinds of poetry. Check out the list of books tagged ‘environmental writers‘ in our book database to find additional classroom resources.
Take students to a natural area. Have each student find a quiet place to sit, reflect and observe. Students should record their feelings in a notebook or a nature journal created for nature observations (see below). While sitting quietly, students may write poems to reflect their feelings/observations OR record their feelings/observations to use to create a poem later. Allow students to draw observations as well. Many nature journals and poems are illustrated with the authors art work.
Creating a Nature Journal
A nature journal is a place to record your thoughts, feelings, and observations about nature. It is a place to reflect and interpret your inner thoughts on the natural world and to develop a greater awareness of both the natural world and your own thoughts and feelings. Many nature journals contain drawings, pictures, and specimens (such as leaves, feathers, or other small objects).
Activities to use during a nature poetry unit:
- Animal Poetry- recognize and experience the inspirational value of wildlife
- Aqua Words- describe the reasons that water is important to all living things
Cross-reference to these units for additional information: