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11th Grade Poetry Unit

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This forms-based unit was created using the Understand by Design template.

Text of 11th Grade Poetry Unit

  • Unit Concept or Theme: Poetry and Language Grade level: Eleventh Grade Length of unit: 3 Weeks

    Stage 1 Desired Results

    Meaning Enduring Understandings/Generalizations: Standardized language is used to assure universal understanding

    nonstandardized language allows for more interpretation of the reader/recipient.

    Poetry both uses and manipulates standardized language to evoke emotion, rhythm, and aesthetics.

    Both authors and readers can create meaning within a text

    Essential Questions: Why is there a stigma surrounding poetry? How does the form of poetry affect our reading? How much artistic license does a poet have? Who creates meaning the author or the reader?

    Knowledge & Skills Acquisition Learning Goals: (e.g., Iowa/Common core standards.) Reading:

    1. Cite strong and thorough textual evidence to support analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as inferences drawn from the text, including determining where the text leaves matters uncertain. (RL.11-12.1.)

    2. Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in the text, including figurative and connotative meanings; analyze the impact of specific word choices on meaning and tone, including words with multiple meanings or language that is particularly fresh, engaging, or beautiful. (Include Shakespeare as well as other authors.) (RL.11-12.4.)

    3. Analyze how an authors choices concerning how to structure specific parts of a text (e.g., the choice of where to begin or end a story, the choice to provide a comedic or tragic resolution) contribute to its overall structure and meaning as well as its aesthetic impact. (RL.11-12.5.)

    Writing: 1. Write narratives to develop real or imagined experiences or events using effective technique, well-chosen details, and well-structured event

    sequences. 2. Use a variety of techniques to sequence events so that they build on one another to create a coherent whole and build toward a particular tone

    and outcome (e.g., a sense of mystery, suspense, growth, or resolution). 3. Use precise words and phrases, telling details, and sensory language to convey a vivid picture of the experiences, events, setting, and/or characters.


  • Language: 1. Apply the understanding that usage is a matter of convention, can change over time, and is sometimes contested. (L.11-12.1.) 2. Apply knowledge of language to understand how language functions in different contexts, to make effective choices for meaning or style, and to

    comprehend more fully when reading or listening. 3. Demonstrate understanding of figurative language, word relationships, and nuances in word meanings. Analyze nuances in the meaning of words

    with similar denotations. (L.11-12.5.)

    Speaking and Listening: 1. Initiate and participate effectively in a range of collaborative discussions (oneon-one, in groups, and teacher-led) with diverse partners on grades

    1112 topics, texts, and issues, building on others ideas and expressing their own clearly and persuasively. 2. Propel conversations by posing and responding to questions that probe reasoning and evidence; ensure a hearing for a full range of positions on a

    topic or issue; clarify, verify, or challenge ideas and conclusions; and promote divergent and creative perspectives. (SL.11-12.1.) Students will know Key concepts

    poetry, artistic license, authorial concept Elements of poetry

    Form: line, stanza, quatrain, couplets Style: sonnet, ballad, ode, free verse, found Rhythm/Rhyme: meter, iambic pentameter, syllabic, trochee, stressed/unstressed, feet, verse, assonance, consonance, alliteration, anaphora rhyme scheme, scansion

    Elements of Language Punctuation: ellipse, hyphen, semi-colon Grammar: person, tense, parts of speech Figurative: metaphor, symbol, simile, metonymy, synecdoche, tone

    Students will be able to Identify the elements of a poem and their function Classify different types of poems according to their characteristics Plot/number a rhyme scheme Be able to scan a poem Locate purposeful misuse of language in poetry Analyze author intent and interpret choices, citing textual evidence Create their own poem and defend the choices made Offer opinions and ideas toward another peers work in a productive


    Resources/Materials: How Do I Love Thee? After the Sea-Ship Walt Whitman Because I could not Stop for Death Emily Dickinson Washed Away

  • Winter Poem Nikki Giovani Jabberwock C.S. Lewis pity this busy monster, manunkind ee cummings classroom and poetry feature

    Stage 2 Evidence (Assessment)

    Types of assessment: Selected-Response (tests, quizzes); Personal Communication (interview, oral exam, discussion); Written Response (short constructed response questions, entrance/exit slips, essays); Performance Assessment (role-play, Simulation, labs, dramatization) Pre-assessment:

    Poetry survey informal to both gather data on how much students know about grammar and poetry (Have they taken language courses before, have they been exposed to creative writing, how many years of grammar study, etc.) as well as get a general idea of opinions of poetry (do they like it and why, find it difficult and why, any favorite poets, most famous poet they can think of, etc.). The survey would be short, but include a mixture of question types, like scales of 1-10 on agreement, multiple choice, short answer, etc.

    Formative Assessment:

    Quick writes How After the Sea-Side? and How Do I Love Thee? conform to your expectations of form/style? Defy? Why are conventions in poetry different from prose? How much artistic license should poets have? Why was Jabberwock still readable? What sort of conventions did C.S. Lewis pay attention to? What was difficult about writing a poem with storybird? How much did it allow or disallow authorial choice and concept? Did you find the constraints useful or hindering?

    Monitor student sharing in partner, small group, and whole class discussion Alphabox

  • Summative Assessment:

    Students will create their own poem using the techniques that have been discussed in class, such as a mixture of standard and nonstandard language, varied word choice, and form. Students will also submit a 2-3 page essay that explains their choices to either conform to or resist typical conventions, how they anticipate it will be read, and how they think it worked or didnt work based on peer reactions and how they edited after that.

  • SUNDAY MONDAY TUESDAY WEDNESDAY THURSDAY FRIDAY SATURDAY Pre-assessment: Student poetry survey ! ! Unit Intro: ! ! ! ! ! Share collected data from surveys Class/teacher discussion What do we expect of poetry? Begin alphabox of poetic conventions

    Poetry form/style review In-class, teacher modeled/led practice of How do I love Thee? Small group/form style practice of After the Sea-Ship

    Entry slip/TTYPS: AtSS? and HDILT conformity Poetry rhyme/rhythm review Model/lead scansion for Sonnet 150

    GRR Combining identi&ication of form, style, rhyme, rhythm with Because I could not Stop for Death (1-2 stanzas per part) HW: Find one poem that thwarts poetic conventions.

    Sharing whip of poems Small group discussion of poems (with provided questions) Full class analysis, discussion, and interpretation of Free Verse

    ! ! !" !! !" !" !" Alphabox review Introduce and discuss lingual conventions and purpose in poetry Exit slip: Why are conventions in poetry different from prose?

    Language grammar/punctuation/!igurative review Model/lead Washed Away Jigsaw group practice Winter Poem

    Entry slip: How much artistic license should poets have? Debate activity HW: Write a poem on (classroom feature) Read Jabberwock Hand in alphabox (return next class)

    TIPS: Dif*iculty in Jabberwock? DEJ and class discussion of interpretation of poetry, authorial choice and concept Intro poem assignment (Staged reading sign up) Exit slip: Writing with constraints storybird

    Discussion and interpretation: pity this busy monster manunkind (Half whole class, half small group) Handout: how to critique others work/constructive criticism HW: Poem )irst draft

    !" !" !" !" !" !" !" TTYPS: 'irst draft of poetry (without explanation) Give a glow/give a grow Peer editing/individual work time on essay HW: Essay )irst draft

    Save The Last Word For Me activity: Poems, then !inal comment on explanation Remainder of time for staged readings Poems and papers due Introduce next unit

    Stage 3 Learning Plan