Kobe Bryant ‘Dear Basketball’ Poem Analysis (Digital & Print)

Grade Levels
6th - 9th
Formats Included
  • Zip
  • Google Apps™
7 pages; 10 slides
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Includes Google Apps™
The Teacher-Author indicated this resource includes assets from Google Workspace (e.g. docs, slides, etc.).

Also included in

  1. The 'Black Poetry Bundle' has all the materials you need to engage your students in studying, annotating, and analysing some of the most powerful Black poetry of the past 50 years. 6+ complete lessons cover four iconic black poems:Amanda Gorman’s 2021 Inaugural Poem “The Hill We Climb”Tupac Shakur’s
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This lesson guides students through an annotation, analysis, and creative response to Kobe Bryant’s 2015 retirement poem, ‘Dear Basketball’.

‘Dear Basketball’ is a moving meditation not just on sport but also on aging and the necessity of change. The poem is all the more poignant due to the tragic passing of Kobe Bryant in 2020.

Fully optimised for online and/or in-person delivery, the lesson/s include:

  • Pre-learning context (and linked video)
  • Figurative language revision
  • Guided annotation and analysis of ‘Dear Basketball’
  • Scaffolded creative response to the poem.

The materials included can be taught as either a single lesson or as a 2-3 lesson sequence.

This package is my sure-fire way to engage ANY student in the study of poetry! I hope this lesson is as impactful and enjoyable for you and your students as it has been for mine! Happy teaching :)

Total Pages
7 pages; 10 slides
Answer Key
Teaching Duration
90 minutes
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to see state-specific standards (only available in the US).
Read closely to determine what the text says explicitly and to make logical inferences from it; cite specific textual evidence when writing or speaking to support conclusions drawn from the text.
Determine central ideas or themes of a text and analyze their development; summarize the key supporting details and ideas.
Interpret words and phrases as they are used in a text, including determining technical, connotative, and figurative meanings, and analyze how specific word choices shape meaning or tone.
Analyze the structure of texts, including how specific sentences, paragraphs, and larger portions of the text (e.g., a section, chapter, scene, or stanza) relate to each other and the whole.


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