A Day in the life...poems inspired by Walt Whitman
(grades 5-12)
 
  Starting with a brief excerpt from Song of Myself, paired with a student example, students are guided to make a list of people they see on an ordinary day, with an emphasis on noting and describing people they 'know' but don't know their names. The group practices condensing the description of each person into a single long line, and students then compose their own original 'songs of myself.' Older students are also exposed to an John O'Hara poem as a 'looser' more contemporary way of listing your neighborhood. This poems encourage keen observation, along with empathy for others and an appreciation of the variety found in the everyday.  
 

 

Matthew (4th grade, Evanston, 2010)

Jeffrey (8th grade, Thurgood Marshall Middle School)

Matthew (8th grade, Francis Parker School)

 
 
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