Some Dead But Mostly Living Poets

Essential Questions

  • What is poetry? What is the human impulse to use words to create patterns of sound, meaning, and visual aesthetics?
  • How does poetry force us to think and look differently at the world?
  • How does poetry deepen our understanding of the ways that writers use poetic language, techniques, and devices to construct meaning while also providing pleasure?
  • What are some of the distinctive features of different poetry movements including style, structure, and theme?  How do these features help to shape meaning?


  • The Canterbury Tales, Geoffrey Chaucer (General Prologue, Wife of Bath’s Tale, Miller’s Tale, Reeve’s Tale, Pardoner’s Tale, Franklin’s Tale, Shipman’s Tale, Nun’s Priest Tale)
  • Chevrefoil, Marie de France
  • Renaissance and Romantic Poetry
  • Contemporary Poetry

Thurs 3/5
Multiple I Multimodal Presentations

HW: “The Sounds of Poetry, “Accent and Duration,” and ” Syntax and Line”

Read and annotate for main ideas, key terms, and confusing info

Fri 3/6
Multiple I Multimodal Presentations

HW:  “Magical Negro #80: Brooklyn” and “Chevrefoil”  These are two strikingly different poems separated by definitely by time and maybe some content.  What qualities do these two pieces share that both make them poetry?  What content might they also share?

Mon 3/9
Multiple I Multimodal Presentations

Tues 3/10
Intro to the unit and medieval period

    • What are your expectations of reading a piece of literature from the medieval period?

Intro to Chaucer

Reading the General Prologue
Here we meet all of the pilgrims as well as a definite speaker.  Use the handout to keep track of everyone.   As you read the first three stanzas together (volunteers anyone?), take note of the following:

  • What stands out to you?
  • How would you describe the speaker?

HW:  Project Reflections

Wed 3/11
cont. reading the General Prologue p/u with the Friar

Reviewing Pilgrims and Characteristics

Tale Assignment

As noted Chaucerian Lee Paterson noted about the Tales: “the innovation of The Canterbury Tales is not within each tale but in the very condition of tale telling.  In every instance, we are required to read the tale in light of the teller” and that “the portraits are there in order to key the tale to the teller, and specifically to the description in the General Prologue.”  Therefore, you are tasked with

  • How is this tale appropriate for the pilgrim to tell?
  • What does this tale illuminate about the human experience and medieval life?

Choice of:

  • The Knight’s Tale
  • Miller’s & Reeve’s Tales
  • The Shipman’s Tale
  • The Nun’s Priest Tale
  • The Pardoner’s Tale
  • The Wife of Bath’s Tale
  • Friar & Summoner’s Tales
  • The Clerk’s Tale
  • The Merchant’s Tale

Fri 3/13
See AP 3-13-20 Overview video for expectations

Reading and responding day

  • Read tale and criticism and writing a short summary of the main ideas of the criticism to be used in your assignment for the Pilgrim Portrait we’ll begin on Monday

Mon 3/16 – Wed 3/18
Pilgrim Portrait

  • Collaborate with group members to create visual presentation (see assignment on Classroom)
  • Due Thursday @10.45am

Thurs 3/19 & Fri 3/20

  • After reviewing the portraits of your peers and their insights into the tale and character, write a response that reflects how your pilgrim would respond to two of the tales

Mon 3/23 –
Writing the Response and conferences as needed

Wed 3/25
Sharing the responses on Google Meet

Fri 3/27
Sonnet and other poetic forms

Tues 3/31 & Thurs 4/2
Intro to Living Poets Assignment

Living Poets Workshop

Mon 4/6
8 names down and looking at least 4 poets in a little more depth

Google Form – who you looked at, what you learned/are thinking about the poets and their poems.

Wed 4/8
Continue looking at poet and finalizing choice “by end of class”

This means reading their poems and biographical information

Tues 4/14
Google Meet Check-in

  • Sharing the poet’s name you’ll be pitching

Choosing poems for portfolio – reading and annotating

Thurs 4/17
Overview of for the poem response and writing the first poem response

Grading conferences

Tues 4/21
Second poem response

Grading conferences

Thurs 4/23
Google Classroom Assignment

  • Poetry Portfolio Overview
  • Making sure the proposed purchases are in Titlewave
  • Conferences as needed

Mon 4/27
Creating the pitch

  • Conferences as needed

Wed 4/29 & Fri 5/1
Making the pitches!

%d bloggers like this: