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Shape Poems Lesson for Kids: Definition & Examples

Instructor: Valerie Keenan

Valerie has taught elementary school and has her master's degree in education.

Have you ever felt bored of writing in the same old way? Learn what a shape poem is and how much fun it can be to create! Also, see some fun examples and learn some general guidelines for writing a shape poem!

What Is a Shape Poem?

Do you like writing poetry? It can be a lot of fun to craft a poem, but when you look down at that blank rectangle of paper, it can be hard to get inspired to write. One fun and creative way to push past that writer's block is to write a shape poem.

A shape poem is a poem that takes on the shape of the thing you're writing about. So, if you wanted to write a poem about an apple, you could write it inside of the outline of an apple, or you could write a short poem and make the words the outline of the apple.

It's a simple way to spark your creativity. Just pick an object--any object--and write about it. Then, take those words and form them into your shape. Let's look at a few examples below.

Example 1: My Kite

Let's see what a shape poem about a kite might look like! First, we'll figure out what to say about this fun, windy-day object:

I fly my kite

in the windy sky

and smile in delight

as it soars so high!

Up it goes! Up it zooms!

With the birds and through the clouds!

I wish that I had wings.

Great! Now, let's shape the words into a kite--tail and all!

My Kite
Kite

  • Remember: Poems don't have to rhyme all the time, and with shape poems, you can get colorful and decorative.

Example 2: This Hand

For our second example, we'll write a poem about a hand:

Wrinkled though my hand may be,

it is strong and gentle.

It has wiped tears and washed babes.

It has created feasts and nursed the sick.

It has loved, mourned, and celebrated.

This hand, so wrinkled and worn,

has lived more than could ever be told.

Now, let's form the words into the shape of a hand:

This Hand
Hand

  • Remember: Shape poems, though fun to make, can be as serious or silly as you'd like them to be!

Example 3: Little Star

Finally, we'll write a shape poem about a star.

So bright and high.

Splendid light in the night sky.

You shine and sparkle, glow and twinkle.

You dot the dark with magic.

The moon adores you

like a mother admires her baby's smile

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