Poetry Literature and Language Teaching Lazar Gillian

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Materials design
and
lesson planning: Poetry
Literature and Language Teaching (Ch. 6)
Lazar Gillian
Presenter: Betty Hsu
Putting a poem back (Jigsaw puzzle )
1. and molly was chased by a horrible thing
2. so sweetly she couldn’t remember her troubles,and
3. went down to the beach (to play one day)
4. may came home with a smooth round stone
5. which raced sideways while blowing bubbles:and
6. it’s always ourselves we find in the sea
7. maggie and milly and molly and may
8. and maggie discovered a shell that sang
9. milly befriended a stranded star
10. For whatever we lose(like a you or a me)
11. as small as a world and as large as alone.
12. whose rays five languid fingers were;
Putting a poem back together again
maggie and milly and molly and may7
went down to the beach (to play one day)3
and maggie discovered a shell that sang8
so sweetly she couldn’t remember her troubles,and2
milly befriended a stranded star9
whose rays five languid fingers were;12
and molly was chased by a horrible thing 1
which raced sideways while blowing bubbles:and5
may came home with a smooth round stone4
as small as a world and as large as alone.11
For whatever we lose(like a you or a me)10
it’s always ourselves we find in the sea 6
Ans: 7,3,8,2,9,12,1,5,4,11,10,6
How to put a poem back
Jumble Up & Reorder
Structure of Poetry
• Identify the characters and the setting
maggie and milly and molly and may
went down to the beach (to play one day)
• Identify the discoursal features, collocational
link
and maggie discovered a shell that sang
so sweetly she couldn’t remember her
Why NOT use poetry in class
• I’ve got a very demanding syllabus to get through, so
there’s no real time for playing around with poetry in
my lessons.
• My students don’t read poetry in their own language,
so how can they possibly read it in English?
• I’ve tried using a poem with students, but they found
it difficult to understand, and just wanted me to give
them the “right” interpretation of what it meant.
• I sometimes wonder if I’ve really understood the
meaning of a poem myself; it’s a bit daunting then to
explain it to a group of students.
Why USE poetry in class
• Poetry is characterized as deviating from the norms of
language, but it is communicated with the reader in a
fresh, original way
• Exploit the unusual use of language as a basis for
expanding the student’s language awareness
• Poetic uses of language will reinforce the students’
knowledge of the norms f language use
• Poetry is rich in words, students can be trained to
guess and check their meanings by using a dictionary
• Identify certain lexical or grammatical features of a
poem to increase student’s awareness of those
linguistic features
HOW to use poetry in class
• Choose poems suitably graded to the level of the
students
• Give students as much help as possible in
understanding the language of the poem
• Devise activities which gently lead students towards
making interpretations of their own
• Encourage students to make use of certain
interpretative strategies while reading, e.g. speculaing
about the symbolic meaning of key words
• Interpretation of a poem varies form reader to reader;
never degenerate poetry learning into a sterile
linguistic exercise
What is distinctive about poetry
Please look at the extracts taken from different
poems to decide…..
What is distinctive about the language?
How poetry can be of value to English learners?
Kangaroo
David Herbert
Lawrence
(1885 - 1930)
Delicate mother Kangaroo
Sitting up there rabbit-wise,
but huge, plump-weighted,
And lifting her beautiful slender face,
oh! so much more
gently and finely lined than a rabbit's,
or than a hare's,
Lifting her face to nibble at a round white
peppermint drop
which she loves, sensitive mother Kangaroo.
The Visionary
Emily Jane Brontë
(1818-1848)
Silent is the house: all are laid asleep:
One alone looks out o’er the snowwreaths deep,
Watching every cloud, dreading every
breeze
That whirls the wildering drift, and
bends the groaning trees.
Lessons of the War:
1. Naming of Parts’
Henry Reed (1914 – 1986)
Today we have naming of parts. Yesterday
We had daily cleaning. And tomorrow morning,
We shall have what to do after firing. But today,
Today we have naming of parts. Japonica
Glistens like coral in all of the neighbouring gardens,
And today we have naming of parts.
A Birthday
(Christina Georgina Rossetti )
My heart is like a singing bird
Whose nest is in a water'd shoot;
My heart is like an apple-tree
Whose boughs are bent with thickset fruit;
My heart is like a rainbow shell
That paddles in a halcyon sea;
My heart is gladder than all these
Because my love is come to me.
What is distinctive about poetry
We saw that POETRY
Reorganizes syntax
Invents its own vocabulary
Freely mixes registers
Creates its own punctuation
Generates vivid new metaphors
Patterns sounds and orders rhythms
All these linguistic devices have important
implications for the use of poetry in the
language classroom
Autobahnmotorwayautoroute
Around the gleaming map of Europe
A gigantic wedding ring
Slowly revolves through Londonoslowestberlin
Athensromemadridparis and home again,
Slowly revolving.
That's no ring,
It's the great European Limousine,
The Famous Goldenwhite Circular Car
Slowly revolving
All the cars in Europe have been welded together
Into a mortal unity,
A roundaboutgrandtourroundabout
Trafficjamroundaboutagain,
All the cars melted together,
Citroenjaguarbugattivolkswagenporschedaf.
Each passenger, lugging his
Colourpiano, frozenmagazines, high-fidog,
Clambers over the seat in front of him
Towards what looks like the front of the car.
They are dragging behind them
Worksofart, lampshades made of human
money,
Instant children and exploding clocks.
But the car's a circle
No front no back
No driver no steering wheel no windscreen
no brakes no
Exploiting unusual language features
Activity 1
Around the gleaming map of Europe
A gigantic wedding ring
Slowly revolves through Londonoslowestberlin
Athensromemadridparis and home again,
Slowly revolving.
1. Ask students to punctuate the first verse as they think
appropriate, e.g. with commas between the names of the
cities
2. Compare it with the original one and think about the
effect
3. Find other examples in the poem
Exploiting unusual language features
Activity 2
Each passenger, lugging his
Colourpiano, frozenmagazines, high-fidog,
Clambers over the seat in front of him
Towards what looks like the front of the car.
They are dragging behind them
Worksofart, lampshades made of human money,
Instant children and exploding clocks.
coffee
illustrations
magazines
food
milk
soup
television
chicken
pictures
photos
Frozen
Instant
Color
1. Ask students to match the adj. with the nous in the box
2. Find any examples of the formed combination from the poem
3. Think about the effect it creates
Possible Activities
Design activities to exploit the unusual language features
of the poem
 Compare the punctuation
What effect is created by the layout and
punctuation used in the poem?
 Compare the combination of adjective and a noun
What effect does the poet create by using the
adj. & noun combination?
Procedure:
1. Analysis the unusual linguistic features of a poem
2. Devise activities to exploit these features
3. Help students to understand the historical or cultural
background of the poem
4. Help students to grap with the underlying meaning, and
the theme of the poem
Helping students with figurative
meaning
Many poems are rich in metaphors or
figurative uses of language
Help students to decipher the multiple
ambiguities of metaphorical language and
make them enjoy it
Find out the metaphor embedded in the
following examples
Helping students with figurative
meaning
Many poems are rich in metaphors or
figurative uses of language
Help students to decipher the multiple
ambiguities of metaphorical language and
make them enjoy it
Find out the metaphor embedded in the
following examples
Evening
She sweeps with many-colored
brooms,
And leaves the shreds behind;
Oh, housewife in the evening west,
Come back, and dust the pond!
Emily Dickinson
(1830-1886)
A housewife v.s. The Sunset
The gulls’ flight
The gulls’flight
is low
flat
&hard
Nigel Roberts
(b.1941)
they go
to sea
to the edge
Where the day’s fire
is lit
they go
as shiftworkers
to the dawn.
The day’s fire
v.s.
The Sun
Stopping by woods on a snowy
evening (Robert Frost)
These woods are lovely, dark, and deep,
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
Robert Frost
And miles to go before I sleep.
The woods v.s. a journey
The problem with metaphors
 Metaphor defined as a connection or comparison
made between things which are usually considered to
be unlike each other
 Understanding metaphors involves engaging in a series
of linguistic inferences, which may be problematic to
students, e.g. days fire stands for the Sun because of
the common qualities of brightness and warmth.
 A lot of devices can be used to help students to come
to grips with the metaphorical/figurative meanings in
the poems (e.g. pair or group works / cloze exercise)
Using poetry with lower levels
 Example: He Threats Them to Ice-Cream
1 Your are going to read a poem called “He Treats
them to Ice-cream” by Anna Swirszcsynski.
What does the verb “to treat” mean here? Write
down what you think the poem is about. Talk
about your ideas to your partner.
Example: He Threats Them to Ice-Cream
2. Now read the first verse of the poem. After
you have read it, write down what you think
happens next. Read this aloud to your class.
Every Sunday they went for a walk together.
He, she
And the three children
Example: He Threats Them to Ice-Cream
3. Now read the next verse of the poem:
One night
when she tried to stop him going
to his other woman
he pulled out a flick-knife
from under the mattress
Were you right about what happened next in the poem?
Now write a last verse for this poem, and read it aloud to the
class.
Example: He Threats Them to Ice-Cream
4. Here is the last verse of the poem.
They still go for a walk
Every Sunday,
He, she and the three children.
He treats them to ice-cream and they all laugh.
She too.
Does it have the kind of ending you expected? What
do you think of the ending?
Example: He Threats Them to Ice-Cream
5. Look at the title of the poem again: “He Threats Them to Ice-Cream”.
Then look at the definitions for the word to treat
Treat
1. to handle, deal with, or manage
2. to behave or act toward
3. to cause to undergo a process for a special purpose
4. to pay the cost of entertainment for
5. to deal with for some desired result.
6. to regard, consider
How many different meanings does it have? Do you think any
of these other meanings are connected with the poem?
Using poetry with lower levels
 Types of Activities
1. Sentence completion
2. Matching words to definitions
3. Predicting writing
4. Ordering sentences in the correct sequence
5. Writing your own poem
6. Gap-fill/cloze
7. Matching words to pictures
8. Checking word meaning in a dictionary
9. Organizing words according to lexical relationships
Using poetry to develop oral skills
Poetry is also rich in patterns of sound.
Teacher should make these sound patterns
be fully enjoyed and appreciated by
students.
Using poetry to develop oral skills
Choral Reading 1
The squares on the words show which words students
have to stress or emphasize. The meaning of sentences
changes according to where they put the stress. Make
students sensitized to how stressing different words
conveys different meanings.
Choral Reading 2: movement + gestures +
beating out rhythms to the poem
Using poetry with higher levels
 Types of Activities
1. Sentence completion
2. Matching words to definitions
3. Predicting writing
4. Ordering sentences in the correct sequence
5. Writing your own poem
6. Gap-fill/cloze
7. Matching words to pictures
8. Checking word meaning in a dictionary
9. Organizing words according to lexical relationships
London
I wandered through each chartered street,
Near where the chartered Thames does flow,
A mark in every face I meet,
Marks of weakness, marks of woe.
William Blake
(1757 - 1827)
In every cry of every man,
In every infant's cry of fear,
In every voice, in every ban,
The mind-forged manacles I hear:
How the chimney-sweeper's cry
Every blackening church appals,
And the hapless soldier's sigh
Runs in blood down palace-walls.
But most, through midnight streets I hear
How the youthful harlot's curse
Blasts the new-born infant's tear,
And blights with plagues the marriage-hearse.
Difficulties for advanced students
reading ‘London’
 Understanding individual words in the poem
 Understanding the metaphorical/symbolic
meaning behind phrases or lines in the poem
 Understanding the historical context which
forms the background to the text
 Understanding the poet’s attitude to what he
sees around him
 Responding personally to the themes of the
poem
 Feeling threatened or intimidated by the
apparent level of difficulty of the poem
Stages in a lesson using ‘London’ p,127
Anticipating student problems
 The background to the poem
Any cultural or historical information?
The author’s life or other works?
 The language of the poem
Any unfamiliar words, grammatical, syntactic or
discoursal features?
Any ambiguities in meaning?
Any figurative or symbolic meanings?
Any aural or musical qualities in the poem?
 Motivating and involving students
How can the topic be made relevant to the student’s experience?
How does the poem mesh with the syllabus requirements?
What activities will most suit the learning styles of the students?
Further tasks and activities
Prereading
Whilereading
Postreading
Further
Follow-up
Stimulating student interest in the text
Providing the necessary historical or cultural background
Helping students with the language of the poem
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