The Art and Science of Color and Light
The power of this instructional strategy/assessment tool lies in the
assimilation of related terms and images which tap into the learners
existing schemata. It requires that the learner make sense of a term or
concept within a defined set of expressions which already exist in the
learners own experience. Additionally the poem can express deeper
knowledge and be used as an assessment or evidence of understanding.
An example is a learner who wrote something like…
Evidence Fossil Record
Plates Float Mantle Uplifts
There is evidence the learner understands that Pangaea was a
super-continent. It began to break apart 200 million years ago, the
result of thermal uplifts in the earth’s mantle. The continental plates
float and move. The fossil record provides evidence that continents
were once connected.
This tool, the Cinquain Poem, can be used in multiple ways:
1. Pre-reading assignment
2. Vocabulary assignment
3. Concept building
4. Concept or skill assessment
The basic format is as follows:
Title (one word)
Describe Title (two words)
Feeling Emotive Words (three words)
Words of Action Movement (four words)
Synonym (of title one word)
Need Not Rhyme
Engages Learner in Content
Sensory emotive expression
Creates an image sense
addition to writing the poem it is helpful to ask students to
illustrate the concept and then superimpose the poem onto the
illustration. This is best done by using a scanner and word processing
program, if available. But the good ole’ fashioned way of having the
student write the poem, using their best penmanship centered on the page
and then illustrating around the hand written poem also works well.
This is particularly effective if the lesson also includes some
instruction on labeling or calligraphy or stylized
“wordmanship”…somewhat like WordARt but more individually stylized.
Graffiti is a type of stylized penmanship.