The effects of reading a poem a day on the attitudes of 7th grade students towards poetry

Many adolescents today express a negative view of poetry however, often their experience with the genre is limited to the handful of poems they interact with in textbooks and on standardized tests. The purpose of this study is to determine if being exposed to a wide variety of poetry will help adolescents view the genre as a whole more favorably. If so, educators can use these results to help in their lesson planning and delivery to help create poetry readers that not only are knowledgeable about poetry, but enjoy it as well. The research question investigated in this study is the effect listening to a poem a day had on the perceptions of poetry of 7th grade students. Students in two research groups completed pre and post opinion surveys and a small sample size completed pre and post interviews. Students' writing journals were collected to see if they chose to write poetry. The results of the study show that the daily reading of poetry had a small effect on the perceptions of the experimental group, but not a large enough change in data to be statistically significant. Further research is recommended and should include more participants, a longer study time period, additional survey and interview questions, and an adjusted survey scale. This study supports the idea that with additional exposure to poetry, opinions adolescents once held can be altered. As more research is conducted, educators and alter their use of poetry in the classroom to help support the growth of knowledge and also help develop students who enjoy reading, listening to or writing poetry. KEYWORDS: adolescents, attitudinal surveys, daily poetry reading, poetry