Robert Frost
Lesson plans and teaching ideas

| Biography and Background | | Online Collections of Poems | | Specific Poems | | Other |

Biography and Background

"The First Three Poems and One That Got Away
From 2006, an article about an editor at The Atlantic Monthly who rejected Frost's earliest submissions.

The Friends of Robert Frost
This delightful site includes extensive biography and criticism. Click on "The Robert Frost Tutorial" for critical essays appropriate for students.

N. H. Farm Shaped Robert Frost's Life and Work
This informational piece describes the New Hampshire farm where Frost lived 10 years before going to England.

"Poetry and Power"
The text of a 1964 speech by President John F. Kennedy in honor of Frost.

Online Collections of Poems

A Frost Bouquet
A collection of links to Frost's poetry online.

"A Group of Poems"
Text of "Birches," "The Road not Taken," and "The Sound of Trees," as published in The Atlantic Monthly in 1915.

Poetry of Robert Frost
Links to texts: A Boy's Will , North of Boston , Mountain Interval , New Hampshire , West-Running Brook , "Departmental," "God's Garden."

Repeat After Us
Audio files of some Frost poems. A good site for LD students, ELL students, and for those who read well and might like to record and contribute. Files are in alphabetical order by poet; scroll down.

Robert Frost: Online Resources
An extensive collection of biography, criticism, video, and more from the Library of Congress.

Seven Poems by Robert Frost
From the March 30, 1962 edition of Life magazine: "Auspex," "A Cabin in the Clearing," "The Objection to Being Stepped On," "How Hard It Is To Keep from Being King When It's in You and in the Situation," and "American Is Hard To See." (The title says "seven," but I only see five.)

Lesson Plans for Specific Poems

Choose, Select, Opt, or Settle: Exploring Word Choice in Poetry
Students are prompted to challenge their notion of synonyms being words that "mean the same" by investigating key words in Robert Frost's poem "Choose Something Like a Star." First they build an understanding of connotation and register by categorizing synonyms for the title word choose. Then they develop lists of synonyms for words of their choice elsewhere in the poem and collaborate on a full analysis, focusing on the relationship between word choice and the elements of speaker, subject, and tone.

"Death of the Hired Man" vocabulary
20 words presented in context and with definitions. Click on a word for pronunciation, synonyms, more.

"Fire and Ice"
This lesson plan uses a graphic organizer to help students access the theme. The lesson is designed for English Language Learners but will work with other students, too.

Listen to Poetry
Scroll down to listen to N. Scott Momaday read "Fire and Ice" or Dana Gioia read "The Road not Taken."

Poems that Tell a Story: Narrative and Persona in the Poetry of Robert Frost
"By analyzing what a speaker in one of Frost's poems includes or omits from his narrative account, students make inferences about that speaker's motivations and character, find evidence for those inferences in the words of the poem, and apply their inferences about the speaker in a dramatic reading performed for other class members." This lesson is designed for grades 6-8.

Reader's Theater with "Death of the Hired Man"
Students will read the poem "Death of the Hired Man" in cooperative learning groups using Reader's Theater to obtain a better understanding of the author's use of characterization through dialogue.

Recognizing Similes: Fast as a Whip
This lesson includes "Birches" as a model.

"The Road not Taken"
Scroll down to find the audio file of an introduction and poet Dana Gioia reading the poem.

"The Road not Taken"
In this YouTube video (6:33), a classroom teacher introduces the poem, reads it, and discusses it.

Robert Frost
This site offers some insights and discussion questions to use in approaching several Frost poems.

What we’ve gotten wrong about this Robert Frost classic
Analysis and discussion of "The Road not Taken" with David Orr, poetry columnist for The New York Times.

Robert Frost at Modern American Poetry
Explication of several poems.

Robert Frost's "Mending Wall": A Marriage of Poetic Form and Content
Students study both the content and the poetic form of "Mending Wall" to appreciate the intricate relationship between a poem's content and its form. This lesson is designed for high school students.

"Mending Wall" vocabulary
15 words presented in context and with definitions. Click on a word for pronunciation, other examples of use, synonyms, more.

"The Road not Taken"
Text of the poem and audio file of Frost reading it.

"The Sound of Trees"
The text of the poem is included in a collection of other writing about nature.

"The Wood-Pile"
Introduction to the poem, text, background and analysis. Scroll to the bottom for audio files of three different poets' readings.

Writing Poetry like Pros
This extensive set of lessons includes an activity using Frost's "Birches."


"The Question of a Feather"
If nothing else, read this short story for its introduction. Available in PDF and Google Docs formats.