Lesson Plan

The Sound of the River

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Grade Level:
Ninth Grade-Twelfth Grade
Art, Community, Conservation, Landscapes, Language Arts, Poetry, Reading, Writing
National/State Standards:
NDE Standards: LA 12.2.1, 12.2.2
SDDE Standards: 9/10 L.2.1


Students will prepare for the assignment by reading and discussing the poems. Following a reading of a brief history of the valley, the class will visit an area on the Niobrara River such as Smith Falls State Park or The Fort Niobrara Wildlife Refuge.  During the trip the river habitat will be explored and the environment will be investigated.  Students (or teacher) may then choose a project as a follow up to the field trip.


Classroom copies of Maya Angelou's poem "Inaugural Poem."

Classroom copies of "Skulls on the Niobrara" by Neil Harrison.*

Classroom copies of "Bison Bison" by Neil Harrison.*

Classroom copies of "The Niobrara River Valley: A Brief History"*

Classroom copies of Personification Poem.*

Classroom copies of the KWL sheet.*

Copies as needed of the interview tips and evaluation.*

* included with lesson plan