FREE TPT Store

FREE TPT Store
Free Downloads

Shop

Shop
Shop

Writing eBook

Writing eBook
Writing eBook

The Poe Poem Our Students LOVE

This is the best Edgar Allan Poe poem to teach to your middle school students! They will absolutely love it!

You know it’s an effective unit when your students continue analyzing and talking about the content long after you have finished your lesson plans! We just never thought it would be a poem from 1849 that our students would become obsessed with and spend recess time wanting to continue discussions and asking their for their parents' thoughts about the poem. And yet, Edgar Allan Poe’s “Annabel Lee” does just that!

It is the PERFECT spooky poem to use around Halloween (but we’ve also taught it in April during National Poetry month, so honestly, it really doesn’t matter!)

This is the best Edgar Allan Poe poem to teach to your middle school students! They will absolutely love it!

Here’s how we teach the poem to our kiddos: 
  1. Start off with the essential question. Ask your students, “Is true love possible at a young age?” Let them discuss/debate this question for a few minutes with partners and as a whole group.
  2. Explain to them that they will now search for evidence in “Annabel Lee” to see whether the speaker in the poem thinks true love is possible at a young age.
  3. Review poetry academic language (tone, rhyme scheme, internal/external rhyme, etc…) with them so they can feel confident discussing the technical aspects of the poem.
  4. Preview the vocabulary in the poem using synonyms, antonyms, and pictures. We guarantee most students will not be familiar with “sepulchres” and “seraphs” and it’s important to understand the word choice before reading the poem.
  5. Turn off the lights, play some creepy background music, and do a close reading of the poem. We use these close reading bookmarks to guide our students’ reading. 
  6. Annotate the poem. Read about how we teach students how to annotate literature by clicking here
    This is the best Edgar Allan Poe poem to teach to your middle school students! They will absolutely love it!
  7. Have a Socratic Seminar. (Read about how to set one up here.) These questions always encourage lively discussions:
    • Are there different types of love? Identify them and explain the differences amongst these types of love.
    • How might Annabel Lee’s death have affected the speaker? 
    • Do you think he will ever be able to move on or find love again?
    • We usually have 5-6 questions to keep the discussion moving along.
  8. Have a writing workshop where students answer the essential question, “Is true love possible at a young age?” We use this evidence tracker to help students get their ideas set up in a logical and easy way! Then, we have the kids use this essay graphic organizer before they sit down to write their first complete draft.  
This is the best Edgar Allan Poe poem to teach to your middle school students! They will absolutely love it!


Check out this excerpt from one of our fifth grader’s essays (mind you, this is 5th grade!): 
     “In the poem, 'Annabel Lee' by Edgar Allan Poe, a young man talks about his one true love, Annabel Lee. This man idolizes this woman and even after facing many obstacles, their love does not cease. In their home, a kingdom by the sea, even the angels are jealous of their love. Unfortunately, Annabel Lee is taken by the angels by the end of this poem, proving that young love is not possible.
     You may have a crush at a young age, but as both people go on in life, soon your love will be a distant memory. According to the text, 'Yes! - that was the reason (as all men know, / In this kingdom by the sea) / That the wind came out of the cloud by night, / Chilling and killing my Annabel Lee' (Poe 4.23-26). When you devote yourself to someone at a young age, there is more time for a danger to upset your love. If you love when you are older, you have the wisdom to prevent bad things from happening…”


Want to recreate this mini unit in your own classroom? Check out the resource we use by clicking here. It also includes activities for “The Raven ” (which our kids love as well!). 

This is the best Edgar Allan Poe poem to teach to your middle school students! They will absolutely love it!

We also include our “Annabel Lee” study as part of this larger, month long, love poem unit, which our students can't get enough of either (especially "Sonnet 18"!). 

This is the best Edgar Allan Poe poem to teach to your middle school students! They will absolutely love it!



Save this post for later!
This is the best Edgar Allan Poe poem to teach to your middle school students! They will absolutely love it!

No comments