Making Curriculum Pop

Poetry Assignment
More details about this assignment can be found at:

Grade: 7th
Subject: English Language Arts General Education
Unit: Poetry

Many of my students do not get excited about reading or writing. They are more interested in their cell phone, PSP, TV, internet and so forth. Thus fter learning about media circles with Pam Goble, multiliteracies with Jen Powers, and the documentaries from the Media that Matters Film Festival I was intrigued. I had never really heard the term “multimodal texts” which are texts that students read everyday—but not inevitably print based. I asked myself: “How can I possibly integrate all my new learnings? How can I make what I’ve learned practical for how and what I teach?”

One of my goals for this year was to effectively integrate technology into my teaching. At the start of this school year I made a wiki and never really touched it, due to the newness of the grade, the school schedule, and my feelings of being overwhelmed. I recently got four new to me computers in my classroom—slow but workable. Once receiving these computers I am now elated to integrate them into my classroom.

In my classroom I do centers. Meaning during group work time every group is doing something different. The centers I’ve previously had are independent reading, vocabulary, literacy games, book clubs and grammar. While the class is doing centers I sit with one group and do guided reading. Thus in my centers I make activities that the students can work on autonomously especially after the first few times they’ve been at that center.

From here stemmed my current project! I’ve always wanted a technology center, but always needed an activity students could perform and learn from. So why not create one with what I’d learned from the Teach, Think, Play 3 Class? My project integrates media circles, my centers, and the textbooks (i.e. curriculum) we use at my school. This is the first time I’ve tried something like this and it was exciting to create.

The project can be found at

Please feel free to provide feedback and ideas for my media circles but for also for teaching poetry in a very engaging way! Enjoy! Thanks!

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