Teaching students to write the Villanelle can be a daunting task, but this complete lesson makes the job much easier for you and much more manageable for your students. The beauty of the Villanelle comes from its repeating lines, often written in iambic pentameter, with non-repeating lines placed strategically in between. This fixed form poem adheres to fairly rigid rules: 19 lines of five tercets followed by one quatrain with a specific rhyme scheme.The lesson begins with three Villanelle models to show students the form in action. As they analyze the poems, students learn a logical process for writing their own Villanelle. Specific and clear instructions along with several helpful hints will guide your students to success as they plan, write, publish, and reflect on their poem. This resource makes teaching the Villanelle easier for you and writing this unique poem a joy for your students.
INCLUDED IN THIS LESSON
1. Student Materials:
• Handouts for Lesson: The Villanelle, How to Write a Villanelle, Villanelle Planner
• Additional handouts: Peer Feedback Form, Writer’s Reflection,
2. Teacher Materials:
• Detailed Teacher’s Guide with Standards, Procedures, and Differentiation
• Two Rubrics (identical but with different point values)
• Answer Keys
• Essential Questions with ANSWERS!
Introduction, pp. 1 – 5 (includes time to review the rubric): 45 minutes
Writing the Villanelle: 3 class periods to allow time for topic development, first drafts, feedback, revision, publishing, peer feedback, and reflection.
A Note about The Standards
The CCSS does not specifically include standards for writing poetry. In this lesson, reading and analyzing several Villanelles as models precedes the writing lesson, so the appropriate CCSS Reading Literature Standards are listed along with one “Range of Writing” standard that, based on the statement below about creative writing from Appendix A of the CCSS, seems applicable.
Creative Writing beyond Narrative The narrative category does not include all of the possible forms of creative writing, such as many types of poetry. The Standards leave the inclusion and evaluation of other such forms to teacher discretion.
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