Poetry itself is a type of art, but did you know that you can create poetry to look like art, too? Visual poetry is a poem that uses patterns, colors, and unique layouts to further communicate the words within the poem.

Visual poetry is an effective way to engage the reader by using basic design principles.

With many students being visual learners, visual poetry is a great lesson if you’re looking for ways to engage your students using interactive activities, and creativity.

In this free and downloadable lesson plan, we provide students with an introduction to visual poetry, the design elements that poets include, and how to create their own visual poem. Students will learn:

  • The features required for a visual poem: Imagery, color, symbolism, and words.
  • What makes a visual poem different from others: Students will assess the difference between sonnets, concrete poetry, and haiku poetry.
  • And how to create one for themselves: Students will use Canva to create their own poem

Students will then be given an activity, where they can use Canva to create their own visual poem. To take part in this lesson, students will require the following:

  • Access to a computer or mobile device
  • Internet connection
  • A Canva login
  • A projector or interactive whiteboard

To take the lesson one step further, there are also homework activities included. Students can create several poems and add them into an album, or students can present their poem to the class and discuss the rationale behind what they created.

For more on this lesson, download the PDF Lesson Plan.

Written by
John Spencer

John Spencer is an author, speaker, blogger and assistant professor in Newberg, Oregon. He is passionate about seeing students embrace creativity. It's why he co-wrote Wendell the World's Worst Wizard and co-founded Write About.