Lesson Plan

The Poetry Archive

This The Poetry Archive lesson plan also includes:

Listening to poems about feeling lonely and feeling like an outsider set the stage for a group activity that focuses on Stevie Smith's "Not Waving But Drowning." Groups examine the three stanzas of Smith's poem separately and identify in each case the speaker, the implication of the words, and imagine what has happened. They then prepare a reading of the entire poem for the whole class that reveals the various speakers.

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CCSS: Adaptable
  • Discussion questions are included for the group activity
  • Also included is a list of related poetry


  • Adobe Flash Player (version 10) and JavaScript are needed to access and listen to Stevie Smith introduce and read her poem