Found Poetry 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.

Pack a punch in your instruction on found poetry with the help of a video lesson and an interactive activity. Use the discussion questions to further student understanding of rhythm and meter.

Learning Objectives:

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

  • define rhythm
  • identify types of meter in poetry
  • create an example of found poetry using a classic poem


30 minutes to 1 hour


  • Notebook paper
  • Pens or pencils
  • White board or chalk board
  • Dry erase markers or chalk
  • Tablet, computer, or projector to access lesson

Curriculum Standards


Write informative/explanatory texts to examine a topic and convey ideas, concepts, and information through the selection, organization, and analysis of relevant content.


Use precise language and domain-specific vocabulary to inform about or explain the topic.

Key Vocabulary

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


  • Begin by asking students to write a definition of rhythm on their papers.
  • Now show the video lesson What is Rhythm in Poetry? - Definition & Examples, pausing at 2:07.
  • As the students are watching the video lesson, write the following words on poster paper or the board, or provide them a printed copy:







  • With the video lesson paused at 2:07, ask students to revise their definition of rhythm according to what they've learned in the lesson. In addition, have students write an example for each of the terms you've provided.
  • Now resume the video lesson and pause again at 3:00.
  • Ask students to respond to the narrator's question regarding the meter of Dickinson's poem on their papers.
  • Start the video lesson again and pause at 3:58.
  • Once again ask the students to respond to the narrator's question regarding meter in Poe's poem.
  • Now play the remainder of the video lesson.


  • Tell students they are going to create a found poem. Define found poetry if necessary.
  • Have the students select either poem featured in the video lesson and change the meter to a different type. This may require students to change some words.
  • Finally, have students share their poems. For a collaborative element, have students team up and try to identify the type of meter used in their teammates' poems.

Discussion Questions

  • How do changes in meter impact the tone and meaning of the poem?
  • Can multiple types of meter be used successfully together?


  • Ask students to rework their favorite songs as they did the poems. Does this make the song more likable or does it take away the appeal?
  • Have students listen to three popular songs. As they listen, students should try to identify the elements of rhythm and meter.
  • Have students rework the sentiments on old greeting cards according to the principles learned in the lesson to create found poetry.

Related Lessons

Closed Form Poetry: Definition & Examples

Anapest: Characteristics, Overview

Iamb: Definition & Examples

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