By the end of grade 10, read and comprehend literature, including stories, dramas, and poems, at the high end of the grades 9-10 text complexity band independently and proficiently. . Next students read the poem and briefly state in their own words what the poem is actually about which is often very different then their prediction, and what the poem is saying about the theme subject. Files are in alphabetical order by poet; scroll down. Burke, Jim, Ron Klemp, and Wendell Schwartz. I then facilitate a discussion of student answers.
Some of the subjects seem as if they are about to speak. Word processor required for access. Why is it so rare to see a series of portraits of someone at different ages? Technology is integrated into this lesson. To check for understanding I select a few students to share their answers with the class:, ,. Ask students how many of them have a photograph of themselves at home. Students gave me fist-bumps as they walked out the door. The Brookings Review, Winter 2002 An All-American Melting Pot.
Alejandro Portes The American Prospect, April 8, 2002, pp. However, this shared landscape is destabilized when Whitman redirects the audiences perspective from the superficial natural environment to the complexity beneath the surface. Finally, they reflect upon those individuals or groups who might have been omitted from their poems. Students explore Whitman's poetry, focusing on his views of democracy. Walt Whitman to Langston Hughes: Poems for a Democracy I will… go with drivers and boatmen and men that catch fish or work in fields.
Other common subjects in 19th-century poetry were characters from the Bible, literature, and mythology; heroes; and nobles. Students note details as they read. In this 2-minute video clip, playwright Tony Kushner reads an excerpt from the poem. Michael Nowlin American Literature, March 1999, pp. George Shulman Raritan, Winter 2002, pp.
Students take notes in their journals. Background, analysis, and suggestions for responding to the poem. Whitman rarely used forms after he developed his poetic philosophy. That is what Whitman was essentially doing. This is for your administrator, not your kids. Drivers and Boatmen and Farmers. I then facilitate a discussion of student answers.
Video of the poem, analysis, and teaching tips. And wrote her praise song early in the 21st Century, when the first African American President of the United States was inaugurated. In his imaginary cemetery, it is the dead who take center stage and whose post-mortem experiences prompt a revelation about the nature of existence itself. What are the people doing in the image? This would also be a good opportunity for parody. After the reading, ask students to recall images from the poem that could have been photographs such as the daguerreotypes students viewed in. Among the resources at this site, don't miss the video. George Watson The American Scholar, Spring 2000, pp.
What would those photographs have been? What emotions are these people expressing? I explain that this poem is filled with imagery and metaphor and ask for examples of each. These poems in their entirety can be found. The first lesson asks students to compare translations of Beowulf. The students have already finished a unit on the theme of 'Immigration'. Perhaps not--some of Whitman contemporaries were including working-class subjects, and earlier in the nineteenth century the English poet Wordsworth and his followers had explored the lives of ordinary English people. Download and print out documents you will use and duplicate copies as necessary for student viewing.
The and the young wife sing, as does the doing her sewing and washing. The poetry reading can take place immediately after this lesson-and feature poems from it-or later in the year and feature poems from various assignments. They should also pay attention to the way they thought their people felt, and the way they felt about their person. The two human characters a young girl and a pilgrim are given no individual characteristics, serving instead as metaphors for romantics, for seekers. She seems singularly unaware that the models of persons, books, manners, etc.
Reading American Modernist Poetry with High-School Seniors. But photographs were the property of all classes. One by one, he lists the different members of the American working class and describes the way they sing as they perform their respective tasks. He wanted to tell the stories of his people in ways that reflected their actual culture, including both their suffering and their love of music, laughter, and language itself. Poetry can also help students to make connections between historical periods and events and the impacts those events have on individuals. Then share the following quote from Whitman's Notebooks, page 67: I will not discuss any professors and capitalists—I will turn up the ends of my trousers around my boots, and my cuffs back from my wrists and go with drivers and boatmen and men that catch fish or work in fields. What rubs off on students is a sense of the richness of language: an ear and an eye for a rooted expression-rooted in culture, rooted in a tradition of risk and struggle for one clean expression.
He hears the , the , the , and the singing. The subjects of occupational daguerreotypes pose with the tools of their trade or goods that they have made. Consideration of Whitman's famous dirge could also lead to discussion of the Civil War, Lincoln, and his place in the hearts of the American people. I explain my rationale for doing so here:. Finally, students compare the three poems using a Venn diagram, synthesize the similarities and differences they identified, and then discuss their findings with the class. This is because of Whitman's belief that poetry was strongest as an oral medium. Finally, using similar poetic concepts and techniques, students will have an opportunity create a poem from material in their own experience.