Friday, May 19, 2017

Poetry Friday -- Student Blackout Poems

I Wanna Be Mature
by A. E.


some days
each year
even months
I wish
I was one hundred

Irene Latham was wondering if students could be successful with found poetry/blackout poetry. We had some time this week to give it a try, and I was pleasantly surprised by my students' poems. This is one of the best so far.

I gave them this first page of Sandra Cisneros' "Eleven" in a page protector, and they used wipe-off markers to find their first drafts.

Happy Friday! Happy Poetry! Happy 4 more days of school!

Kiesha has this week's Poetry Friday Roundup at Whispers from the Ridge.


  1. WHAT?! Four more days of school? Hoo boy I've got 20. Still, student poems do animate our "squirrelly" challenging time together--that and the faces when the first hatched Painted Lady opens its wings and they realize what has been happening for the last 3 weeks! Your poet's choices are thrilling.

  2. I have never written a found poem. This example is inspiring me to give it a try someday soon! And using wipe off markers is genius.

  3. I am so glad you shared this, Mary Lee! I'm with Ramona on the genius of the wipe off markers (as you know!). And A.E.'s found poem is stunning, actually. Thank you! xo

  4. I had never heard of found poetry/blackout poetry. What an interesting way to teach poetry. Fun and interactive. Brilliant.

  5. Happy ending of the school year! Blackout poems are neat.

  6. Yes, A.E. really has something there.
    4 more days? I wish!

  7. Schools in my area don't end until the end of June!

    We did blackout poetry with teens at the library, so much fun! A great tie-in for Banned Books Week. :-)

  8. Sandra Cisneros' words are inspiring, and this one expresses wishes real, doesn't it? Have a marvelous final week!

  9. ...Maine kids go to school until June 20...just sayin'...
    Andyway, that is a great way to do blackout poetry. With a dry erase on the acetate you can make changes so easily! This was a wonderful student piece.

  10. My husband is a historian who reads declassified FBI documents frequently. I really want to rename this poetry to Redacted Poetry, as it reminds me of his documents! :-) Christie @

  11. What a great page protector wipe-off markers idea for finding first drafts of a found poem. I think your student poet did a wonderful job.

  12. Weeks to go here! Great countdown.

  13. Page protectors! What a great idea! I love blackout poetry with students. What's funny to me is that some of the least academic students are able to create the most profound poems....those students who try so hard at everything have a tougher time just being loose enough to find the poem (myself included!)

  14. Bravo! Thanks for the page protector trick too. :)

  15. Very interesting! I love how you found words with a common thread to make her poem. I also found it interesting you gave them each the same page to work from. I bet seeing their individual thinking has been interesting.

  16. This will be something I share with the fourth grade teachers at my school. Thank you for sharing this strategy, Mary Lee!

  17. What a great poem!

  18. Strong poem, love the count down and the surprise, reflective ending. Thanks for sharing Mary Lee, and enjoy your count down too!

  19. Wow, only 4 more days of school? My first-grader has 4 WEEKS! Love doing found poetry like this with kids, as it gives them a chance to discover words and phrases they may not have thought of on their own.

  20. I've been hearing that students love to do blackout poetry. Some do more than find words to make a poem, they use the blacking-out to create art. Have you seen those?


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