In our NEW Writing in English lesson on How to Write a Poem, students practice writing various types of poems, including haiku poems, acrostic poems, diamonte poems, and limericks.
The final (optional) step in the lesson is to create a class anthology with all of your students’ best work. Your class can assemble handwritten booklets, or they can experiment with a digital publishing app or tool. If you have access to technology (tablets, mobile devices, and desktop computers) and Internet in your classroom, here are a few fun tools and apps that you might want to try.
You probably already know that Google Docs is one of the easiest collaborative tools for students to use. Simply create a New document, call it Poetry Anthology, and share it with your students via email. In the Editing field, choose whether you want to use Editing (changes are made by editors) or Suggesting (changes have to be approved). When the collection is ready, share it with parents by email. You can also print and photocopy a booklet as a keepsake. Don’t forget to add a cover!
This app is simple and easy to use. If you have a tablet in the classroom, you can download Book Creator in the App Store or Google Play store. Students can type their poems out and add drawings or pictures. Pass the e-book around until everyone has added a poem! Export it and share it with some readers.
Have all of the students submit a poem or two, and ask a few tech-savvy students to add the poetry to a Slide Share presentation. Share the Slide Share anthology with your students’ parents and set it up for all students to see in a computer lab or school library.
The iBooks Author app from the App Store is quite easy to use on a desktop computer. If you have a Mac in your school library or classroom, consider adding this free app. Some of the ready-made templates are perfect for a poetry anthology. Students can export in PDF or publish in the iBooks bookstore. Your writers will appreciate the high-quality publishing that they can do with iBooks Author.
The Storybird website allows writers to build beautiful books quickly! Your students will have fun searching for the perfect art to pair with their poems. Students can each make a book, or they can work together on an anthology by taking turns with one project (consider putting one student in charge as editor). Students can also read poetry by Storybird authors for inspiration.
Can you recommend any apps or tools that students can use for writing collaboratively?
Other Fun Ideas for Poetry Anthologies
- separate the class into groups and give them different jobs (e.g., typists, editors, cover designers, proofreaders, and marketers)
- sell your poetry anthologies at a school event to raise a bit of money for trips or resources
- have students take turns reading a poem over the announcements
- hold a “poetry cafe” event with another class or with parents, and bring in “wine” (sparkling water) and cheese and soft music, or invite any musicians in your class to play a piece between poetry readings
- invite younger children (e.g., kindergarten buddies) to illustrate the poems
- use the How to Write a Poem lesson during Poetry Month (April)
Share Your Poems with ESL Library
If you try our How to Write a Poem lesson, please encourage your students to share some of their poems in the comments below! We can’t wait to read your limericks and haiku poems.