Math Poetry

Ever tried writing a mathematical poem?

Math and poetry have more in common than it might seem at first glance. They are each precise, creative, and patterned in concisely woven ways. And they can both contribute to engaging summer fun.
Here’s an idea: keep math vocabulary in front of mind in the off-school months by writing poems with those words. Let’s take a look at the steps to do that.
Step 1: Write down three topics that interest you right now.
Step 2: List 20 math words that may come up in your classroom.
Step 3: Write about one of your topics using some or all of these words.

Here’s a sample list:

Infinite Solution
Equal Zero
Add Numbers
Subtract Calculate
Minus Fraction
Plus Sum
Divide Equation
Multiply Square
Figure Circle
Count Triangle

And here’s a poem about a day at the beach, using a lot of those words:

From the beach, the sea looks infinite,
Look at all the people here for sun and swim,
I can’t possibly calculate them all,
And they’ve multiplied every hour,
I’m here today, plus my family,
You can add my best friend to that,
And we want to figure out a beach game to play,
With zero electronics while we’re out here,
I think we’re equal to that task,
In fact, I have just the solution,
If we only had a beach ball to toss…
Oh, look! My granddad brought one from home,
I can always count on him for fun things to do,
And after we play ball, we’ll have sandwiches,
Minus the sand,
And when the sun goes down,
We’ll all circle back home again.

Composing poems in a geometric shape is another way to combine math and poetry. Like the Diamante Poem, which you write in the shape of a diamond. This style of poem has seven lines containing respectively one, two, three, four, three, two, and one words.

Here’s an example of a Diamante Poem:

becomes the
Perfect time to
Save nickels and dimes
To buy something
Really good

Or, maybe you could write your own triangle-shaped poem, like this one:

I am a good
Friend of animals
And the birds in trees,
I love to take walks in woods
And listen to the green forest sing
Its ancient songs of moss and raindrops
Then, we sit for a picnic beneath tall shade.

You’ll find all kinds of delightful math and geometry poems for early and upper elementary school students in Mr. R’s World of Math here!

Ali Cunlisk

Marketing Coordinator at DreamBox Learning
Ali is currently the Marketing Coordinator for DreamBox Learning. She is a recent graduate from the University of Washington and is a firm believer in adaptive education. When she is not at work she enjoys Washington hikes, exploring new restaurants and of course hanging out with her four legged furry brother Max!
Ali Cunlisk

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