Lesson Plan

Teach This Poem: “Dead Stars” by Ada Limón

Pay attention! A lesson featuring Ada Limon's poem "Dead Stars" is designed to help learners develop their noticing skills. Class members first study the constellation Orion's image and list what they notice and how the image makes them feel. They read the poem silently, again listing words and phrases that they notice. After listening to the poem being read aloud, groups meet, compile their lists, and post them on the board. The lesson ends with a whole class discussion of repetitions and patterns they see in the lists.

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Instructional Ideas
  • Prepare and post images of Antlia, Centaurus, Lacerta, Hydra, Lyra, Lynx, and the Draco constellations
Classroom Considerations
  • Part of the Academy of American Poets series "Teach This Poem"
  • Includes discussion questions and extension suggestions for grades 7-8 and 9-12
  • A link to an interview with the poet is provided for teachers
  • Younger readers may need additional scaffolding to make the connections among the discussion questions and the poem