I open by asking students what "Confetti" is? Surprisingly I get a lot of different guesses. I share with them that it is little pieces of colored paper that are shredded and then used to throw Confetti for celebrations. This helps to make a connection to those who are unfamiliar with the word.
I ask them how are words and confetti similar? Students give random answers such as words are thrown into the air, we celebrate with words and we can say many color words.
I want them to begin to think about the relationship between the two before I introduce the poem so that they can already have the mental picture in their minds.
I then introduce our objective that we are going to read a poem titled "Words as Free as Confetti" by Pat Mora that makes comparisons between color words and feelings. We will define the comparisons being made by the author and then choose five to define and give examples.
I pass out copies of the poem Words as Free as Confettiand have students follow along as I read it aloud with expression. I pause at the spanish words and ask them what they think the words mean. I have quite a few spanish speaking students in my class so we have plenty of translators.
I want students to determine how the author gives context clues to meaning so I ask them what hints the author gives readers in the passage to help them decipher the meaning. I take students responses and ask which answers makes more sense.
I then pull out the chart paper and ask students to help me create a words confetti chart of comparisons being made in the poem. I pull sticks to get a variety of students to respond and to hold them all accountable to the lesson. I add details in the poem to the chart and then ask what words students think describe each color. I add these to the chart.
I ask students to reread the Words as Free as Confetti poem and choose five color word comparisons that are their favorites. I model how to complete the first box with my blue color word, examples and what the color blue means to me using the clue of "icicle" given in the poem.
Students are then asked to complete the rest of their chart in a similar manner.
The meanings created problems for a few students so I circulated and prompted them with What does _______mean to you? What comparisons are being made in the poem? What does the author think about the word by making that comparison? How does _______make you feel?
Students who finish early create a color picture on the back of their worksheets - this will front-load the learning for the next lesson in the unit.
I close the lesson by having students share their poem analysis and comparisons with their table partners and call on a few to do this aloud. I ask students what the author feels about words and language. I then push them further and ask is freedom of speech a good or bad thing for people in our country to have. When is it a good thing? When is it a bad thing?
I want them to be thinking about this because it is the bigger question we will address in our government unit and one I will bring up again in tomorrow's lesson when they create their word art pictures. I want them to come to the realization that words can be hurtful, helpful, and emotional so there is a value placed on how they use them.