Lesson Plan

"Fog" by Carl Sandburg (Grades 3-5)

Handwritten poem: Fog, The fog comes in on little cat fee. It sits looking over city and harbor on silent haunches and then moves on. By Carl Sandburg
Grade Level:
Upper Elementary: Third Grade through Fifth Grade
Literacy and Language Arts
Lesson Duration:
60 Minutes
Thinking Skills:
Remembering: Recalling or recognizing information ideas, and principles. Understanding: Understand the main idea of material heard, viewed, or read. Interpret or summarize the ideas in own words. Applying: Apply an abstract idea in a concrete situation to solve a problem or relate it to a prior experience. Creating: Bring together parts (elements, compounds) of knowledge to form a whole and build relationships for NEW situations.

Essential Question

How can I write a poem using figurative language?


I can discuss Sandburg’s use of figurative language in the poem “Fog”.
I can write a poem using figurative language to compare weather to an animal.


Carl Sandburg was known as the Poet of the People. He loved writing so much that he wrote poetry, children's stories, news articles, and a biography about Abraham Lincoln, as well as an autobiography about himself.  


Upload "Fog" by Carl Sandburg to Google Slides to push out to students virtually or use in the classroom. 


Download Fog by Carl Sandburg


Procedure (Remote Learning)
Share the “Fog” PowerPoint with students. They will listen to Carl Sandburg read his poem and answer questions about his poem. Then students will write their own poem comparing snow to a snowy owl.

Procedure (In Person)

Activating Strategy

  • Watch the video to hear Carl Sandburg reading his poem “Fog.”
  • Pause the video after he reads it the first time.
  • What do the students notice about the way Sandburg read the poem?
  • Continue to play the video as Sandburg reads the poem again.
  • What two things is Sandburg comparing?
  • How is a cat similar to fog?

Teaching Strategy
  • Ask students to close their eyes as the teacher reads the poem “Fog” out loud. What did they visualize as they heard the poem? Share visualizations with the class.
  • Show students the poem on the board. As a whole class, act out the poem “Fog” by adding movements one line at a time and repeating the poem.
  • Look at the poem “Fog”. Discuss how Carl Sandburg used figurative language (metaphor) to compare the fog to a cat. Why do they think he chose to do that? What are the similarities between fog and a cat? (How do they both move, look, etc?) (You could use a Venn diagram or T-chart to compare and contrast cat and fog.)
  • As a whole class brainstorm about snow. (How does snow move, what does snow look like, etc?) Share ideas with the class and write on the board.
  • As a whole class, brainstorm animals that they would compare with snow.  Choose one of the animals.
  • Model for the students how to write a poem using figurative language to compare snow and the animal keeping the format of the poem similar to “Fog”.

Summarizing Strategy
Have the students work in small groups or individually to write a poem using figurative language to compare another type of weather and animal. Share poems with the class.

Extension Activity
  • Groups can perform their poems by adding movements. Groups can also video their performance to share with other classes.

Contact Information

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Last updated: August 10, 2020