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6th Grade English Poetry Lit Cafe: #3 Concrete Poetry

What is Concrete Poetry?

 concrete poem

Concrete Poems, sometimes called pattern  or shape poems  are "as much pieces of visual art made with words as they are poems."( Concrete poems use the words of a poem to create the shape of an object represented by the poem.  There are 2 types of these concrete or shape poems - Outline and Drawing.  The sneaker poem above is an example of a drawing concrete poem and the scissors poem is an example of an outline concrete poem. Concrete poems are a visually interesting and fun way of writing poetry! Learn more about concrete poems below.


poem images from


Cafe Station Directions

Directions For This Cafe Station

At this station you will learn about concrete poems, a form of visual poetry.  Follow the directions below to understand how concrete poetry developed, view some examples of concrete poetry and then create your own concrete poem.

1. Read the What is Concrete Poetry? box on the left.

2. In the Resources box, click on the link Brief History of Concrete Poetry  to learn about the history of concrete poetry and understand how it began.

3. In the Resources box, click on the link What is and How to Create Concrete Poetry? to learn more about the types of concrete poetry. Also, click the NASA link on this web page to see the airplane concrete poem.

4.  In the Resources box, click the NASA website airplane concrete poem link to see a cool example of a "moving" concrete poem.

5. (Optional) View the video clip below of the animated concrete poem - kind of cool!



Now it's time for you to create your own concrete poem using  the methods listed. You can create  drawing or outline types of concrete poems.

Then share your poem with your group by first reading the poem out loud without showing the poem, then again allowing your audience to view the poem.  Discuss the difference for the audience between the two presentations and how the visual nature of the concrete poem changes or enhances the experience for the audience.

Methods: There are 2 ways that you can create concrete poems. Please try both.

   1. Please create at least one hand drawn concrete poem on the blank sheet provided. It can be an outline or drawing concrete poem.

    2. Try the Visual Poetry app on the iPad to design either a drawing or outline type of concrete poem. You cannot save these poems but it is fun to try using the shapes provided or draw your own in the app.


"The Slow Train" Animated Concrete Poem

Here's just a quick fun animation of a concrete poem about a slow train. Animated poetry - what a cool idea!