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In Our Own Voice

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Keywords: language arts, poetry, photography, community building, presentations
Subject(s): English/Language Arts, Technology, Social Skills, Photography
Grades 4 through 5
Original Author: Patricia Whitfield, Tulsa
Subject Area: Language Arts & Technology
Grade(s): 4-5

Students will work as individuals and as a group to discover their own personal "voice" in poetry. When they have created several pieces that they really like and are ready to publish they will use the digital cameras to take pictures of objects and experiences in their world that relates to or supports their poetry. They will use the Multimedia Lab V to help publish their poetry. This lesson will result in several different types of presentations: slide-shows, PowerPoint presentations, video, and a book.

Learning Objectives

Students will be able to:
* Use a digital camera, camcorder, and a computer to produce a product
* Identify and write different types of poetry
* Orally present their work to their peers, family, and the community
* Use the Multimedia Lab V

Lesson Plan

This lesson will be presented to the students after the poetry unit has been introduced in language arts. Students will learn about different types of poetry and how poets use poetry to help them express feelings and thoughts. Students will be told that technology will be used to help them write poetry in a new way.


Students will spend about two-weeks learning about poetry, writing, and editing their poetry prior to their work in the computer lab.

Day 1:
Students will be introduced to the procedures for using the digital cameras. To help tie in real-world experiences, students will need to pass an operators test and be issued a operator's license prior to their using the cameras.(All student's will be given the opportunity to take the test until they pass).

Day 2:
Students will begin to build a portfolio of pictures to add to their poetry. With parent approval, students will be allowed to check out a camera for one night so that they can take pictures in their personal setting.

Day 3-5:
Students will continue to take pictures. They will also begin adding them to their poetry. Once they have completed their poetry pages, they will print them out.

Day 6-8:
Students will choose a project(s) to create using the Multimedia Lab V.

Day 9-11:
Students will incorporate their Multimedia Lab V projects into a book to be published by StudenTreasures. (StudenTreasures is a company that will publish a hardback book of the students work for free).

Day 12:
Students will choose one of their works to present in a poetry slam. (The poetry slam will be held in the schools library. Parents, friends, and the community will be invited. The students will use digital cameras to take pictures to help create posters and flyers advertising the poetry slam. Students will use their Multimedia project to support their oral presentations during the poetry slam. Students will use the digital cameras to take pictures of their friends and families during the poetry slam).

Day 13:
Students will practice their oral presentations and finish any lab work.

Day 14:
Students will present their oral presentations.

After the lesson:
The books that the students create will be published by StudenTreasures in March. When the books are shipped back, parents will be invited to an Young Author's Night, where the students can share their books with their parents. Students will be able to use the digital cameras to take pictures of their family and friends.

This unit on poetry works well as a collaboration with the librarian of the school and the computer teacher.
Cross-Curriculum Ideas
Social Studies: Poetry could be linked to the cultral backgrounds of the students or even to particular eras in history such as the American Revolution
Students write reflections about their experiences and thank you notes to parents and community members for attending the Young Author's Night
Materials: Point and Shoot, Yearbook, Word Processor, Web Page, Slideshow, Worksheets, Camera Bags, xD Memory Cards, Digital Voice Recorders, Flash/USB Drives, Batteries
Other Items: 200 8.5x11 HP Photo and Imaging Paper, $50.00 each, total of $10000.00
2 HP 10 magenta ink cartridges, $33.99 each, total of $67.98
2 HP 10 yellow ink cartridges, $33.99 each, total of $67.98
2 HP 10 cyan ink cartridges, $33.99 each, total of $67.98
3 HP 10 black ink cartridges, $33.99 each, total of $101.97
3 128k Memory card, $35.00 each, total of $105.00
Associated File: 743556.kid