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The Haunted House

Write a Spooky Poem – A process that introduces onomatopoeia to your students. Provide them with examples and have them experiment with poetry structures.


Teaching Onomatopoeia

The Haunted House

haunted house

<—- When my son was about 10 we made this in the software Audacity. You might like to use it as a model for writing.

1. Say these words ‘normally’ – bah, boo, bump, clank, clink, chink, eek, howl, moan, murmur, murmuring, ouch, plop, rattle, rumble, rustle, screech, shuffle, slap, slash, squeak, squelch, tap, thud, thump, tick-tock.

2. Say these words with a partner so they sound really spooky.

3. Create a moody poem about a haunted house by inserting words from the list above into the poem structure below. NB you can insert a few of your own words to help the poem make sense.

The Haunted House
Door ____________ slowly open,
______________ them in
a ____________,
a ____________,
a distant _(animal) (noise it makes)
_____________ comes to a _____________ halt
and ____________!
________(sound) __________(sound) _________(sound)
Door ___________s shut
Only to open when the next unsuspecting
______________ comes along.

(Hint – copy & paste this poetry scaffold into a word processor)

4. Rearrange the lines of the poem so you have your own unique structure and gain maximum ‘spookiness’.

5. Read the poem aloud to a friend so it sounds like a shopping list.

6. Experiment with reading your new poem with loud and soft tones of voice. Include a whisper, a yell & use your voice to create sound effects.

7. Add a line of your own.

8. Delete two lines.

9. In poetry you tend to pause a short time at the end of lines without punctuation markers and pause a little longer at the end of lines with punctuation markers. Experiment with pauses and see what effect they have on the poem.

10. Perform the poem – to another class, to your parents, with puppets…

11. Publish the poem in an interesting way – no textas, blog it, use a graphics editor & creative commons pictures, use a drawing program, create an audio story with sound effects… be creative and have fun with it!