Wednesday, April 17, 2013

The MIdnight Ride of Paul Revere

Our thoughts and prayers are with those in Boston.
Our prayers are with all of the victims, their families, the first responders, and medical personnel.

Ironically, we had prepared this post last Saturday before the horrific events in Boston occurred on Monday.......


April 18, 1775
Paul Revere's Ride
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Listen, my children and you shall hear
of the midnight ride of 
Paul Revere,
on the eighteenth of April in Seventy-five....

There are just some poems that never leave us.  I remember clearly the beginning lines of Paul Revere's Ride.  Since I am drawn to storytelling, I have never fully gravitated to poetry.  However, I really do enjoy reading poetry that tells a story.  

There are two picture books that I think are wonderful examples of poems that tell stories.  First, Longfellow's poem is beautifully illustrated by Ted Rand in one of the books.  The other, Once Upon a Poem, is a collection of favorite poems that tell stories.  In this book, Longfellow's poem is beautifully illustrated by Carol  Lawson.   

Today is the anniversary of Paul Revere's Ride I thought it would be wonderful to highlight Longfellow's poem and the illustrated texts.  

Every April I make a promise to myself that I will develop better poetry lessons!  I began this year's Poetry Month with Paul Revere's Ride.  My eight graders happened to be learning about the Revolution and in literature, we were reading excerpts from Johnny Tremain so I thought the poem would be a nice supplement. And it was! 

I have come to learn that no matter what grade I teach, students love when someone reads to them.  The students were engaged as we read the poem and discussed how it compared to what they were reading in their history sources and Johnny Tremain.  It also helps that I love this historical period and was able to show my students some pictures from my visit to Boston.

Here are some ideas to integrate Paul Revere's Ride!
The titles link to the websites.

The Paul Revere House
This website offers the real story of Paul Revere's ride including many other resources.  Students can extend their understanding of this historical event.

The Archiving Early America website features a flash video on Paul Revere's Ride.

In this lesson plan on the ReadWriteThink website, students use MS PowerPoint to create facebook-like presentations about historical figures.

The Midnight Rider Virtual Museum
The Kids and History website offers a wonderful virtual museum.  The virtual museum has five exhibition halls that include the poem and then several extending activities for individual and small group work focusing on this historical time frame.

For, borne on the night-wind of the past,
Through all our history, through the last,
In the hour of darkness and peril and need,
The people will waken and listen to hear
The hurrying hoofbeats of that steed,
And the midnight message of Paul Revere.
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow   

Linking to:
Golden Grasses  


  1. Beautiful and perfect timing! I'm spotlighting this post on Share it Saturday! Thank-you for linking up!

  2. Thank you so much! We simply could not believe the timing either!

  3. "no matter what grade I teach, students love when someone reads to them." So true. When I taught 8th grade, I often read aloud to my kids.

  4. It is so true. It is also a wonderful way for students to learn vocabulary and prosody.