Loved That Lesson: Imitating Poetry


We have had some serious fun with poetry using Love That Dog.

Imitating Poetry from book Love That Dog with Ideas by Jivey.

If you’ve never read this book, it is a MUST with a poetry unit! Check it out here! It’s a little sad, but even still, my kids have loved it the last few years.

Those of you that already follow me know that I think imitation is a must for kids to learn the craft of writing. I do this weekly through Mentor Sentences. Analyzing the structure and craft of an author, then trying it out: that is the BEST way for students to learn to write!

Sooo… I decided to have my kiddos try out imitating a poem. This one worked perfectly since we had also just done some research on an animal for an opinion piece:

Under a maple tree
The dog lies down,
Lolls his limp
Tongue, yawns,
Rests his long chin
Carefully between
Front paws;
Looks up, alert;
Chops, with heavy
Jaws, at a slow fly,
Blinks, rolls
On his side,
Sighs, closes
His eyes: sleeps
All afternoon
In his loose skin.
First, we broke down each line for structure-
Under a maple tree – prepositional phrase
The dog lies down – what the animal does (subject/predicate)
Lolls his limp
Tongue, yawns, – does something with a (adjective) body part, then another action
You get the idea… we only did the first seven lines because I thought that would be “enough.” They had a bit of a struggle getting started, but once I gave a few of them ideas to start, they really flew… and they BLEW ME AWAY with their imitation poems!
Imitating Poetry from book Love That Dog with Ideas by Jivey.
The two students above are ESOL students, and they rocked it!
Imitating Poetry from book Love That Dog with Ideas by Jivey.
I thought this one was beautiful! Such great visualization and detail…
I wish I could share all of their poems with you. They have really grown as writers and readers this year. I am so proud of them!
We also imitated the first stanza from Love That Boy by Walter Dean Myers:
Love that boy,
like a rabbit loves to run
I said I love that boy
like a rabbit loves to run
Love to call him in the morning
love to call him
“Hey there, son!”
I’m sure you can figure out why this one was my favorite of them all… :o)
Imitating Poetry with Ideas by Jivey.
Definitely give this a try with your students- I think you’ll be surprised at what some of them do!