Howe Independent School District

"Educating the Hope of Tomorrow"

Maya Angelo

*   Biography - CNN report

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings poem by Maya Angelou

Videos of Poem  “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings” with words and pictures:

Actress reciting the poem

** Maya reading “Still I Rise”

 ** Interview of author – “Finding My Voice”

Wikipedia article about "I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings"  -  I_Know_Why_the_Caged_Bird_Sings   


List of her poems  



Roald Dahl


Recitation with words of “The Crocodile”  

 With illustrations  

Dahl recites “The Dentist and the Crocodile”  


Emily Dickinson


*** Crash course biography by John Green  

Recitation of “Because I Could Not Stop for Death”  

“I’m Nobody Who Are You”

** Recitation with words   

 ** Poem performed by musician  

 Favorite Poem project -  

 Performed as a song  

** Short film project

** Stop action illustrated poem


Douglas Florian

Douglas Florian talks about his favorite word  

Florian reads his poem “The Drone Bees”  

“Hello My Name is Dracula” recited by a class  

Animation of “What I love About Winter” and “What I hate about Winter”  


Robert Frost

Article about Frost

Links to some of his poems

*** Robert Frost reading his poem “Stopping by the Woods on a Snowy Evening”

*** Animated version of poem (very good!)  

Recitation with photos  

Ways to enjoy Stopping by the Woods:

**Singer performing the poem as a song

**Performed by a youth choir  


“The Road Not Taken”


Eloise Greenfield

Video of “Honey I Love”

Performer and chorale response for “Way Down in the Music”  

1st graders reciting “Things”

 Little girl reciting “Harriet Tubman Didn’t Take No Stuff”  


Nikki Grimes

Message from Nikki Grimes on the importance of books

Grimes reading from “Words with Wings”  -

Student recitation/animation of “The Pen”


Langston Hughes

Langston Hughes was a famous African American poet, playwright, and author. He is known for infusing Jazz music with literature. He was a big part of the Harlem Renaissance of the 1920’s. Hughes wanted to tell the stories of his people including their suffering and love of music, laughter, and language. He died of cancer in 1967. A street in New York City was renamed in his honor… Langston Hughes Place.  (

Biography of Langston Hughes (class project) -

Biography “Our History in Black”  

 Langston Hughes reading his poems…. “I, Too”

“The Weary Blues” (1958)

Dramatic Interpretation of “Mother to Son” performed by Shimah Abdullah  

List of Langston Hughes’ poems  


Emma Lazarus

Emma was an inspiration for her people - she gave them a voice. She also loved the American way and thought of it as a place of peace.  Emma was very studious - by the time she was eleven she had learned Italian, French, and German.  She even started to translate foreign poet’s works.  When she was seventeen, her dad had her first collection of books published: “Poems and Translations” which was then followed by “Admetus and Other Poems.”

Biography for Emma Lazarus:  book trailer  

 Ken Burns biography

Emma Lazarus’s poem “The New Colossus” (Statue of Liberty)

List of her poems:


Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Biography and some of his poems   


“Arrow and the Song”
Analysis of the poem  


Reciting of poem, sang as a song, choir

Disney’s version   

High school choir singing the poem


Pat Mora

Pat Mora talks about writing about one’s own culture  

Pat Mora reads her poem “Mi Madre”

Interview with Pat Mora  

Student project about Mora


Naomi Shihbab Nye

Naomi grew up with two entirely different cultures: a Palestinian father and an American mother.  During her high school years, she lived in Ramallah in Palestine, the Old City in Jerusalem, and San Antonio, Texas, where she later received her B.A. in English and world religions from Trinity University.  Growing up with two different cultures showed Naomi different ways of thinking and different life styles.  She has explored the similarities and differences of cultures through her writings.

**Naomi reading her poems:  “One Boy Told Me”  

**“Please Describe How You Became a Writer”, “Fresh”, “During a War”, and “Truth Serum”   

Interviews with Naomi:  On slowing down….

**On importance of poetry….  

A list of Naomi’s poems:

After the attack on 9-11 Naomi wrote a letter to Any Would-Be Terrorists'.   This is the link

Biography about Naomi:


 Jack Prelutsky

Video of “Last Night I Dreamed of Chickens”  


Christina Rossetti

“What is Pink?  

“Hurt No Living Thing”  

“Who Has Seen the Wind”  




Robert Louis Stevenson


Disney animation for “My Shadow”


“The Swing”  

Someone singing “The Swing”  



Jane Taylor

“The Star”  

Musical version of “The Star”  


John Greenleaf Whittier

John was a Quaker (a form of Christianity given their nicknames because of the way they shook when they prayed.   He was an abolitionist and wrote articles and poems against the institution of slavery.  His poems were loved so much that his birthday became a holiday of sorts.   His poems were read by school children.

** Biography of John Greenleaf Whittier   

** “In School Days” performance  

*** “Don’t Quit” Poem recited by a 3 year old -  

Recitation with images

Snowbound poem  

Poems and a biography of John Greenleaf Whittier

Biography (7 min.)  

“The Pumpkin”  



Under the Mambo Moon (poetry, music, & dancing from Latin America)


1.  The Girl From Ipanema  

2.  Cha Cha Cha Dancing  

How to dance Cha Cha Cha with Mark Ballas  

3.  Zampona (flute instrument)  

4.  Candombe (drum)  

5.  San Jarocho (stringed instruments)

Poetry Performances:

Sarah Kay Poem “Hands” -