• Views 824
  • Favorites
Photo by Annie Spratt via Unsplash

Database Provider


Poetry Writing


9th, 10th, 11th, 12th


English Language Arts


90 minutes

Regional Focus



Google Docs, Google Slides


This lesson plan is licensed under Creative Commons.

Creative Commons License

Deforestation Odes and Elegies

Created By Teacher:
Last Updated:
Apr 21, 2024
Ask a Question


In this lesson, students learn about deforestation and climate change and respond by writing an ode or an elegy.


Step 1 - Inquire: Students watch a video showing deforestation and pick one region to further research the effects of climate change.


Step 2 - Investigate: Students learn the differences between an ode and an elegy and write a poem to the lost forests.


Step 3 - Inspire: Students share their poems and investigate possible solutions to deforestation.

Accompanying Teaching Materials
Teaching Tips


  • This lesson can be used as a standalone or as a lesson in a poetry unit.

  • Students are given voice and choice.

  • Students create their own poetic response to a real-world challenge.

Additional Prerequisites

  • Students should have some basic understanding of poetry.

  • Students should have a basic understanding of deforestation and its connection to climate change.


  • This lesson is easily adaptable to Advanced Placement or honors level classes by including other literary and language elements in the poems such as juxtaposition, oxymoron, consonance, assonance, enjambment, alliteration, and personification.

  • Students can write each stanza in a different meter or rhyme. Examples include iambic pentameter or ABBA rhyme scheme.

  • Teachers can split the lesson in two and focus on an ode in the first lesson and an elegy in the second.

  • Students can write both an ode and an elegy and compare the differences in writing, tone, and overall effect.

  • Social studies, civics, and economics classes can extend this topic to social justice, socioeconomic class, and cultural impacts of deforestation within each specific region.

  • Student poems can be shared outside of the classroom in the school newspaper or a community newsletter, on a class or teacher website, on school display boards, or in extracurricular poetry or environmental clubs.

Scientist Notes

This lesson empowers students to understand what deforestation entails and how they can write poems to express their feelings of grief, respect, emotion, and valor in combating deforestation in their community. All materials used in the lesson have been verified and are suitable for teaching. In this light, this lesson is credible and recommended for the classroom.


This resource addresses the listed standards. To fully meet standards, search for more related resources.

Supporting Standards

  • English Language Arts
    • Language (K-12)
      • L.KL.9–10.2 Apply knowledge of language to make effective choices for meaning, or style, and to comprehend more fully when reading, writing, speaking or listening.
      • L.VI.9–10.4 Demonstrate understanding of figurative language, word relationships, and nuances in word meanings, including connotative meanings.
      • L.KL.11–12.2 Apply knowledge of language to understand how language functions in different contexts, to make effective choices for meaning or style, and to comprehend more fully when reading or listening.
    • Writing (K-12)
      • W.NW.9-10.3 Write narratives to develop real or imagined experiences or events using effective technique, well-chosen details, and well-structured event sequences.
      • W.NW.11-12.3 Write narratives to develop real or imagined experiences or events using effective technique, well-chosen details, and well-structured event sequences.

Note On Standards:

This lesson is aligned to SubjectToClimate standards. Review the aligned standards directly in the lesson plan document and teacher slideshow.

Discover more on SubjectToClimate.
Related Resources


Login to leave a review
  • I did a shortened version of this lesson with 10th graders, about 30-40 minutes. I went over the definition of odes and elegies, played the video, and then we discussed the video, researched a forested area for 8 min, and gave them time to write an ode or elegy. This worked well within a larger poetry unit. The 10th graders seemed to be engaged in the video, attentively watched it, and we discussed how deforestation seems so damaging, especially with both visual browning and construction sounds in the video. The lesson seemed to be memorable and helped students to really understand what an elegy is. Several students struggled with finding information and putting that information productively into the poem. Only a few finished entire poems within the time period. There was also a bit of confusion because some students thought an ode meant praising deforestation, not the forest itself. I would use this lesson again, and perhaps give more time to think through the writing and application of info to poetry.
    6 months ago