Grade: Middle

#3555. Found Poem (Song Lyrics or Vocab)

Reading/Writing, level: Middle
Posted Sun Sep 11 09:24:38 PDT 2005 by Elizabeth (
Materials Required: Cd/Tape Player, Song Lyrics or Dictionary Entries
Activity Time: 45 minutes
Concepts Taught: Poetry

Objective: SWBAT alter song lyrics in order to craft their own found poem using existing song lyrics.

Cd/Tape Player
Lyrics to 3 Songs


Found poem - a poem created from something already written (song lyrics, recipes, dictionary entries, etc.). *Using this with dictionary entries is a fun way to do vocabulary, too.*

1. I started by playing the 3 songs I brought lyrics to get the students in the zone.
2. Before class, I created a found poem using the lyrics from these songs. All I did was "mix and match" the lyrics from the different songs to create a new poem. It requires no original writing, just some time to organize someone else's words.
3. Distribute the song lyrics and sample found poem to the students.
4. Let them read the found poem silently and highlight/underline in the song lyrics the lines that were used.
5. Talk about why you picked those lines, why they fit together for you, etc.
6. Student reactions to the poems.

Students were to bring in lyrics for class the next day would create their own poems.

This really worked because my students are very much into their music. It also helped make poetry less scary and intimidating because while they were creating a poem, it helped take the pressure off (at least this time) of having to write their own lines. This is something I'll come back to throughout our poetry unit and I'll even use it with their vocabulary lessons in the literature portion of their class. Enjoy!