Lesson Plans

Here are PDFs of each lesson plan block (see the overview if you have questions about why the plans are organized as blocks and how you can adapt each one to your specific schedule).  If you would like to try just one lesson plan, 1 is a great place to start.  If you’re only interested in lessons related to the novel, take a look at 4, 8, 9, and 10.  If you’re only interested in teaching poetry, you’ll want lessons 1, 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, 11, and 12.  If you would like to do a one-week plan (five days), I recommend lessons 1, 2, 3, 6, and 11.

Lesson plan 1:

This is the introductory lesson.  Students will view and create self-portraits, and as a class, you’ll lay some ground rules for discussion.  You’ll also provide a brief introduction to the novel Me, Who Dove Into the Heart of the World.  Finally, you’ll read and discuss a poem by Sheila Black.

Lesson plan 2:

In this lesson, you’ll discuss last night’s assigned reading, “A Short History of Disability” and read an essay and a couple of poems by Laura Hershey.  This lesson is where you’ll introduce students to the TPCASTT framework of poetry analysis.

Lesson plan 3:

This lesson focuses on blindness.  It starts with students engaging with senses other than visual and analyzes poems by blind poets Daniel Simpson and Stephen Kuusisto.

Lesson plan 4:

This is the first day of discussion of the novel, drawing on the groundwork laid by previous lessons.  Small groups conduct close reading of passages from the novel.  There is a write-around of “telling” statements from the book, followed by a whole-class discussion.

Lesson plan 5

This lesson has students examining three of Brian Teare’s poems and then writing a poem of their own in a style that imitates his.

Lesson plan 6:

Starting with a brief discussion of the novel, students move on to analyze Denise Leto’s essay and poems.  This lesson focuses on close analysis and interpretation of descriptive detail in poetry.

Lesson plan 7:

This lesson is a “gallery walk” of three of Cynthia Hogue’s poems, which students read multiple times.  The goal is to help students unearth the layers of meaning present in imagery-rich poetry.

Lesson plan 8:

This is a fishbowl discussion of the novel, adaptable to other novels as well (the fishbowl is almost always a crowd-pleaser!)

Lesson plan 9:

In this lesson, students work together to create posters visually depicting the novel’s themes, characters, plot points, settings, and imagery/language.  Students put their posters on the walls and other students view them in a gallery walk.

Lesson plan 10:

This is a peer review workshop day for papers, and I’ve included suggestions for how to get the most out of peer feedback sessions.

Lesson plan 11:

Students read one poem that demonstrates ableist attitudes and two poems that are voices of disabled people talking about how they are perceived.  Students compare and contrast two poems.

Lesson plan 12:

A day of reflections on what was learned in the course of the unit.



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