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Poetry in the Schoolyard

Elementary, Middle


English Language Arts moves out of the classroom in this reflective writing activity in which students explore a local habitat with their senses. Based on their outdoor experience, the class compiles a list of adjectives that are then used in a creative writing exercise that has students describe their interactions with nature through poetry.

General Assessment

Recommendation of how and where to use it

Although this activity focuses on English Language Arts there is a strong link to science objectives that explore the relationships between habitats and living organisms.  Students could create food webs based on their observations and use scientific instruments and dichotomous keys to sort and classify species. 

This lesson could form the basis of a year-long project that explores seasonal changes in nature.  While documenting their  personal experiences through poetry students could also investigate the adaptive strategies used by plants and animals to survive extreme conditions like cold.

The student poems could also become part of an environmental program that highlights the value of nature to Canadians and offers strategies for spending more family time outside.

Relevant Curriculum Units

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Themes Addressed

Ecosystems (2)

  • Appreciating the Natural World
  • Biodiversity