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First we tried list poems

and personification

Haikus were the best

Surprisingly, teaching grade six students list poetry wasn't as easy as you might expect. It did get easier if we used a starting point and an end point such as getting out of bed and then adding all of the steps in between getting out of bed and leaving the house. A recipe made a great list poem for one student. How to take care of a pug or puppy was another idea that worked.

Personification - where an inanimate object took on human qualities or emotions was difficult at first but we found that, by reading the poem aloud without sharing the title first worked because, if the object could be guessed correctly, then that would mean success at personification. And if the audience couldn't figure it out then that would mean tweaking the poem until it could be guessed. It took a bit of practice but it was a lot of fun for the class to guess what object was being personified.

Writing Haiku; five syllables in the first line, seven syllables in the second line, and five syllables in the third line. Of the three types of poems to write the Haiku were the most successful and, for the class, the easiest to write. Some of the poems were laudable.

I think the greatest enjoyment they had was the chance to read their work aloud.

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