Jack Prelutsky crafts troubling words to deepen your nightmares. Arnold Lobel illustrates ghouls to scare the unwary reader even more. Nightmares, Poems to Trouble Your Sleep-becomes a resource for a writing activity I call Scary Drop Poetry.
Objective: Given a cluster of scary words dropped on their desks, each of the students will arrange them until they’re satisfied with their scary poem.
Materials: 1. Words For Scary Stories And Poems Here is a list of the many words used in the book that are fun to manipulate into one’s own scary poem. Copy the list several times and cut out the words individually. Put a bunch of words into several envelopes. These will be issued to students.
2. Make a transparency of the list of words above and also cut them into pieces. Then put the bunches of words into envelopes. This will be used by the teacher on the overhead projector.
3. Make a transparency of the finished poem, My Bloodshot Brain.
And make a transparency of The Troll from the book. Click on the picture. Double click and choose Copy. Then paste the picture on a new page and print. Then using a transparency sheet, print off the Troll poem.
and the transparency of the draft of the poem. Double click on poem, choose Copy then on a new page, Paste the poem, then print off on transparency sheet. How To: 1. Using the overhead projector, if that can still be found in today’s classrooms, put a cluster of the transparent words onto the glass plate of the projector and move the words around until you create a scary poem.
2. Demonstrate adding or subtracting word prefixes and suffixes for effect. Encourage students to repeat words they like for onomonopatia or other literary devices. (seeliterarydevices.net).
3, During class time, walk around the classroom and reach into the envelopes and drop a pinch of words onto the students’ desk tops.
4. Go back to the overhead and show the transparency of the poem as an example of how YOU created the poem.
Evaluation: Create your own rubrics or standards the students will be graded against.
Create fun scary poetry with the word lists from Nightmares–Poems to Trouble Your Sleep. It is fun, easy, and rewarding for quick poetry and increasing students’ vocabulary.