ReadWorks.org is the source for this two-day lesson intended for sixth graders. The objective is to compare narrative and lyrical poetry and teach students how to distinguish between the two by examining three poems from Shel Silverstein's Where the Sidewalk Ends.
ELA teacher Gordon Van Owen uses podcasting to teach poetry and his technique touches on a lot of features - practice public speaking and active listening, as well as utilizing analyzation and critical thinking. Van Owen uses nursery rhymes with his seventh and eighth graders, but this mini-lesson can easily be attempted for older students and to teach narrative poetry.
"Casey at the Bat" by Ernest Lawrence Thayer is a great poem through which to teach narrative poetry, as it depicts the built-in drama of America's favorite pastime. This lesson uses the "Casey at the Bat" as a framework and includes a number of thought-provoking discussion questions in addition to a multiple-choice quiz to test students knowledge once the lesson is complete.
In this lesson, students look at classic narrative poems by Edgar Allan Poe and Alred Lord Tennyson and analyze them, however the real focus is teaching students how to move beyond the reading and analyzation process and into writing their own poetic narratives.
In this lesson, students first move through matching poetic terms with their definitions by literally moving about the room. Then they apply what they learned to a narrative poem by William Wordsworth.