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Poetry In Emotion

I tried this approach to poetry at Heany Park  Primary School with some Grade 5 students and thought I would share it with you.
When it comes to emotions it’s better to write it out than act it out!
To be able to write about emotions, we first have to acknowledge that we have them. We have to adopt a show don’t tell approach when we look inside to find physical descriptions for the emotions we wish to describe.


• Share the poems provided (below) as models of ‘emotion poems’

• Ask students what they notice about the structure of the poems.

• You may need to point out the noun- verb pattern used extensively in the poems.

• Brainstorm some emotional states such as being happy, lazy, nervous, anxious, crazy etc.

• Invite students to write a poem using the structure of the emotion poems and an emotion of their choice.

• Remind students that their poems should reflect the noun –verb pattern of the earlier poems

• Ask the students to share their poems with a partner without giving the emotion. Can the partner guess what emotion is being described.

Emotion Poems


I’m bored
Horse yawning
Eye blinking
Time dragging
Sleep craving
Foot twitching
Sigh heaving
Brain bulging
Fly watching
Freckle counting
Fun fading
Hope sinking

Alan Wright


I’m embarrassed
Pants wetting
Cheek burning
Step tripping
Food spilling
Banana slipping
Mom dancing
Dad singing
Dog farting

Alan Wright


I’m angry
Foot stomping
Door kicking
Wall hitting
Boo throwing
Desk slapping
Drawer slamming
Pencil breaking
Paper tearing
Teeth bearing

The worst part is,
Can’t you see?
There’s no one else to blame
But me.

Sara Holbrook


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