Poetic Cinema Illustrating Poetry

One class period lesson plan exploring Poetic Cinema - Resources to extend the lesson to more than one class and discussion questions are included. 

Poetic Cinema one class Lesson Plan
Credit: MY HERO

Films Celebrating Poetic Cinema 

Films and poetry have a connection because of their use of images, sound, and time. As you watch these films consider the techniques used by filmmakers to bring out these elements in poetry and have students consider the Discussion Guide questions.  (These films have a total run time of approximately 30 minutes.) 

Still I Rise

Gabriel Diamond, Patrick Barnes, Phil Collis

A visual and musical interpretation of American poet and civil rights activist Maya Angelou’s electrifying poem "Still I Rise." (3:53 minutes run time)

The Peace of Wild Things

Katy Wang

When despair for the world grows in me… ...I come into the peace of wild things. ~Wendell Barry (1:17 minutes run time)

To The Boy - for Mattie J.T. Stepanek

Produced by:Alana Daly Mulligan

Mattie's life philosophy was to play after every storm, so now, when we all feel tossed about but the waves of our world, we must remember to hold onto hope. (3:06 minutes run time)

Song of the Earth

Produced by:Matthew Evans & Leona Evans

Mother and son collaborate in the expression of poetry and music for the planet. (4:00 minutes run time)


Cara McPhie

In honor and celebration of Black History Month. (5:10 minutes run time)

Extend this lesson one or two more class periods by having students view the student made films below and consider the discussion questions.  For a deeper dive into poetic cinema, have students illustrate an original poem or favorite poem using film. 

Poetic Cinema Produced by High School Students

Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening

Produced by:Taft High School

Taft High School student, Matthew Marroquin, takes on the task of illustrating this poem by Robert Frost. (2:13 minutes run time)

The World Is Too Much With Us

Produced by:Taft High School

Based on the poem by William Wordsworth. (1:16 minutes run time)

Nature Poem

Produced by:Jerrilyn Jacobs

The virtues of being among nature and finding inner peace. (1:10 minutes run time)

Playas de Tijuana

Sophie Kim

An inspiring poem about the border fence that meets the sea, where names become prayers and where “the worst place to be is here and not there.” (3:08 minutes run time)

Original Poem

Heroes Wanted

Trey Carlisle

Trey celebrates the best of humanity with this original hero anthem! (6:00 minutes run time)

Discussion Guide

1. Which of these films evoked the most emotion in you? Why?

2. How do the images used in these illustrated poems strengthen the meaning of the poem? How do they lessen it?

3. Is poetry visual by nature? Are some poems a stronger choice for illustrating with visuals? Why?

4. How have the filmmakers emphasized the story of the poem?

5. If you were to illustrate a poem through film, which poem would you choose? Why? 

Students are invited to submit their own original poems or poetic cinema using the Create Program

How to use MY HERO's Create Program to Publish Stories, Art, Film and Audio for Students

Tutorial for students: Publish written stories, film, original artwork and audio in MY HERO's multimedia library.

Create Program
Credit: MY HERO

Additional Poetry Lesson Plan Resources

Poetry Lesson Plan
Credit: MY HERO

Organizer created on 3/29/2022 11:25:29 AM by Laura Nietzer

Last edited 4/17/2024 12:37:59 PM by Laura Nietzer