Rhythm Lesson Plan

Instructor: Dana Dance-Schissel

Dana teaches social sciences at the college level and English and psychology at the high school level. She has master's degrees in applied, clinical and community psychology.

Rhythm is all around us, but how can you help your students learns the specifics of it? A video lesson defines and presents several types of rhythm and an activity sets students free to analyze rhythm in a classic poem using color.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this lesson, students will be able to:

  • define 'rhythm'
  • outline the characteristics of iamb, trochee, spondee, anapest, and dactyl
  • identify examples of each type of meter


45 minutes to 1 hour

Curriculum Standards


Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including figurative and connotative meanings; analyze the impact of rhymes and other repetitions of sounds (e.g., alliteration) on a specific verse or stanza of a poem or section of a story or drama.


Analyze how a drama's or poem's form or structure (e.g., soliloquy, sonnet) contributes to its meaning


  • A worksheet created using the associated quiz
  • Photocopies of a well-known poem (not free verse)
  • Red, blue, orange, yellow, and green markers

Key Vocabulary

  • Rhythm
  • Iamb
  • Trochee
  • Spondee
  • Anapest
  • Dactyl

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