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InLangston Hughes and the Blues, students recreate common poems in his style
9, 10, 11, 12
Title – Langston Hughes and the Blues
By – Lara
Primary Subject – Language Arts
Grade Level – 9-12
Instructor: Lara Squyres
Setting: American Literature class 10th grade
Does anybody know anything about the blues?
I will list on the board characteristics they give me. There are four that I will explain to them: theme, use of slang, repetition and rhyming. There can be one of these characteristics or all four, any combination will do.
After being given various poems by Langston Hughes, the student will be able to create poetry in his style by identifying and then using two main concepts found in Hughes’s writing.
The students will get into groups that they choose themselves and read various poems by Langston Hughes. Each student in the group will have one of these two poems; Gals Cry for a Dying Lover or Florida Road Workers . Then, using jigsaw, they will get into another group with everybody who shares their same poem. In these other groups, the students will read the poems and discuss the characteristics they find that stand out as to what genre this poem would be under. They will then reconvene into their original group and share the information about the poem with their group members.
Now I will provide an example of a poem I recreated. I used the nursery rhyme Jack and Jill as a base for my poem and recreated it to resemble Hughes’s writing. We will read this poem and identify similar ideas to what they identified in their jigsaw poems.
Check for Understanding:
I will ask my students to look through the first stanza and point out what they think resembles Hughes’s writing. I will list these on the board.
I will ask them to go through the rest of the reconstructed poem in pairs and find any other phrases or words that help to identify the style of this poem. Based on what I think about the comprehension of the class, I will ask them to share their ideas with the class.
I will have my students create their own few lines of a poem for practice. I will ask them to recreate a commonly known poem or a nursery rhyme. They will need to recreate it while keeping in mind the key concepts we identify and try to use them in their poem. Afterwards, we will read some aloud; hopefully there will be some volunteers (if there is time).
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