ALEX Lesson Plan


Personification with "Grass" by Carl Sandburg

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  This lesson provided by:  
Author:Michele Eller
System: Eufaula City
School: Eufaula City Board Of Education
  General Lesson Information  
Lesson Plan ID: 29955


Personification with "Grass" by Carl Sandburg


Students will be reading the poem "Grass" and identify the main idea and supporting details with a partner.  Students will then write a poem using personification.

 Associated Standards and Objectives 
Content Standard(s):
English Language Arts
ELA2015 (2015)
Grade: 11
4 ) Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in the text, including figurative and connotative meanings; analyze the impact of specific word choices on meaning and tone, including words with multiple meanings or language that is particularly fresh, engaging, or beautiful. (Include Shakespeare as well as other authors.) [RL.11-12.4]

English Language Arts
ELA2015 (2015)
Grade: 11
5 ) Analyze how an author's choices concerning how to structure specific parts of a text (e.g., the choice of where to begin or end a story, the choice to provide a comedic or tragic resolution) contribute to its overall structure and meaning as well as its aesthetic impact. [RL.11-12.5]

English Language Arts
ELA2015 (2015)
Grade: 11
6 ) Analyze a case in which grasping point of view requires distinguishing what is directly stated in a text from what is really meant (e.g., satire, sarcasm, irony, or understatement). [RL.11-12.6]

English Language Arts
ELA2015 (2015)
Grade: 11
22 ) Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development, organization, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience. (Grade-specific expectations for writing types are defined in standards 19-21 above.) [W.11-12.4]

English Language Arts
ELA2015 (2015)
Grade: 11
24 ) Use technology, including the Internet, to produce, publish, and update individual or shared writing products in response to ongoing feedback, including new arguments or information. [W.11-12.6]

English Language Arts
ELA2015 (2015)
Grade: 11
32 ) Present information, findings, and supporting evidence, conveying a clear and distinct perspective, such that listeners can follow the line of reasoning, alternative or opposing perspectives are addressed, and the organization, development, substance, and style are appropriate to purpose, audience, and a range of formal and informal tasks. [SL.11-12.4]

Local/National Standards:

NCTE National Standards


Students read a wide range of print and nonprint texts to build an understanding of texts, of themselves, and of the cultures of the United States and the world; to acquire new information; to respond to the needs and demands of society and the workplace; and for personal fulfillment. Among these texts are fiction and nonfiction, classic and contemporary works.


Students apply a wide range of strategies to comprehend, interpret, evaluate, and appreciate texts. They draw on their prior experience, their interactions with other readers and writers, their knowledge of word meaning and of other texts, their word identification strategies, and their understanding of textual features (e.g., sound-letter correspondence, sentence structure, context, graphics).


Students apply knowledge of language structure, language conventions (e.g., spelling and punctuation), media techniques, figurative language, and genre to create, critique, and discuss print and nonprint texts.

Primary Learning Objective(s):

Students will be able to identify the main idea and supporting details of the poem "Grass."

Additional Learning Objective(s):

Students will be able to write a poem using personification.

 Preparation Information 

Total Duration:

31 to 60 Minutes

Materials and Resources:

"Grass" written by Carl Sandburg

Main idea & Supporting details worksheet (attached)

Quiz on Grass (attached)

Notebook paper (students)

Technology Resources Needed:

Computer with Internet access

LCD Projector and/or interactive whiteboard

Teacher Tube account (free for teachers)


Students should be familiar with personification - something not real being given human-like qualities.  

Students should already be placed with compatible partners.


1) Have students list out the qualities of grass - Ex: animals eat it, it covers up dirt, etc.  Tell students that the poem they will be reading is titled "Grass" by Carl Sandburg. 

2) Pass out the poem "Grass" and explain that in this poem Sandburg uses personification - giving grass human-like qualities.  Have students listen to it being read (following along) on Teacher Tube.

3) With a partner, students determine the 5 W's of the poem (attached worksheet).  Teacher should monitor.  

4) When everyone is finished, have partnership share answers with the teacher discussing discrepancies.  Guide students into formulating the main idea of the poem from the supporting details (5 W's).  Is the writer for or against war?  The passengers do not even remember that a war was fought there.(Direct their thinking into seeing that he is against war because he views it as meaningless.)

5) Have students write their own poem using personification to convey a message just as Sandburg did.  EX: A cellphone that knows too much gossip.  Allow students to share their poems with the rest of the class.

6) Quiz on "Grass" (see attached). 


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Assessment Strategies

Formal - Quiz on "Grass"


Students may write more poetry or study other poems by Sandburg, such as "Chicago."


Students may be paired with an advanced reader, a paraprofessional, or special educator.  Quiz may be modified with only two answer choices instead of four.

Students may want to practice finding the main idea & supporting details using Quia

Each area below is a direct link to general teaching strategies/classroom accommodations for students with identified learning and/or behavior problems such as: reading or math performance below grade level; test or classroom assignments/quizzes at a failing level; failure to complete assignments independently; difficulty with short-term memory, abstract concepts, staying on task, or following directions; poor peer interaction or temper tantrums, and other learning or behavior problems.

Presentation of Material Environment
Time Demands Materials
Attention Using Groups and Peers
Assisting the Reluctant Starter Dealing with Inappropriate Behavior
Be sure to check the student's IEP for specific accommodations.