This resource contains three poems for analysis with directions, final project instructions, a rubric, and a sample for a poetry/creative writing unit project based around the creation of a piece of nature poetry. If used as part of a unit, it could be completed in a week (with time over the weekend for students to complete their poems).
When I used it, my students had spent the better part of a week beforehand discussing why nature is a common motif in poetry, what writing about the natural world means to us, and how to use imagery in writing, and then we spent part of 2 class periods out of doors collecting written "snapshots" of nature -- image-heavy observations of the outdoors -- before returning to the classroom to turn that pre-writing into poetry.
The poems for analysis include:
-"I wandered lonely as a cloud" by William Wordsworth
-"Mindful" by Mary Oliver
-"Freeway 280" by Lorna Dee Cervantes
The poems were chosen to demonstrate a variety of figurative language as well as for their diversity. Wordsworth was, for me, a given; Mary Oliver is an influential, modern female poet whose writing is full of nature imagery; and Lorna Dee Cervantes is a Chicana with Native American roots, so including her was important to me as a means of respecting the deep connection that many indigenous peoples celebrate.