Echo Verse is a type of poetry that's been around since the time of Ancient Greece. In this unique style of poetry, one line is followed by one or two words that rhyme with all or part of the previous line’s last word. Here's an activity that teaches kids to write an Echo Verse of their own. In the process, they get great rhyming and creative writing practice. All they need is pencil and paper, and they're all ready to get their creative juices flowing!
What You Do:
- First, teach your child about Echo Verse. Explain to him that the first line of an Echo Verse is just a simple sentence. The following line consists of only one word that's a rhyme, or an echo, of the last word of the previous sentence.The echo line sometimes changes the meaning to make fun of the previous line; sometimes it makes a pun on the previous line’s last word; sometimes the echo line just adds humor.
- Next, read some Echo Verse poems with your child. A couple examples are written below.
My cat scratched me with her paw and said “Meow”
My smelly dog then wanted to give me a hug,
The pitcher wound up the ball and threw it fast,
The hitter swung but missed, it was a strike,
- Now, it's time for him to start thinking about his own poem! Start by having him pick a topic that he wants to write about. It could be about a pet, a friend, one of his favorite hobbies, or anything else he can think up.
- Next, he should brainstorm some rhyming words for the chosen topic. How many different rhyming words can he come up with? Have him write a list of his favorites.
- Now, it's time to start writing! Using his rhyming list for inspiration, have him come up with a sentence, and an echo to follow. Encourage him to keep writing and see how many lines he can come up with.
When he's all done, have him read his poem out loud for the whole family!
Beth Levin has an M.A. in Curriculum and Education from Columbia University Teachers College. She has written educational activities for Macmillan/McGraw-Hill and Renaissance Learning publishers. She has a substitute teaching credential for grades K-12 in Oregon, where she lives with her husband and two daughters.