Tag Archive for poetry

Short Stories: “Two Words”

Goals for the Week:

  1. Follow along with the daily readings of short stories.
  2. Continue working on your Choice Board project
  3. Continue to collaborate with teachers and classmates

Today’s Checklist:

  1. Read “Two Words” by Isabel Allende
  2. Consider the importance of an author’s diction (word choice)
  3. Try your hand at writing a poem for National Poetry Month!

Today’s Lesson!


  • ELAGSE9-10RL4 Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in the text, including figurative and connotative meanings; analyze the cumulative impact of specific word choices on meaning and tone (e.g., how the language evokes a sense of time and place; how it sets a formal or informal tone.)

Learning Target: 

I can read and analyze stories and poetry by Chilean authors so that I can try my hand at writing my own poem for National Poetry Month.


In addition to our short story today, we’re looking at a little poetry! Check out this poem, “If You Forget Me” by Pablo Neruda:

Work Session: 

Your assignment for this unit!

You will have one major assignment for this unit, and you get to choose it! Visit the choice board and select one project to complete about one story. In other words,

Today’s Story: “Two Words” by Isabel Allende

Today’s story is by a Chilean author. She’s still alive – much more contemporary than many of the authors we’re reading this unit – but the downside to that is that her stories are harder to find in audio versions. I found a Spanish version of the story, which you should listen to if you understand Spanish, but unfortunately I could not find an English reading. If you’re like me and only read English, you’ll have to read it on your own 🙂

Here’s the Spanish version:

As you read or listen to the story, think about the power of words and how we use them to our advantage. There is no greater power in words than when they’re put into a poem, so that’s what you’re going to try to do today!

Word choice – or diction – is super important in poetry, because poems are short, so every word counts double. Here is another poem by Pablo Neruda, one of my favorites, “Ode to My Socks”:


Ode to My Socks

Pablo Neruda – 1904-1973

Maru Mori brought me
a pair
of socks
which she knitted herself
with her sheepherder’s hands,
two socks as soft
as rabbits.
I slipped my feet
into them
as though into
with threads of
and goatskin.
Violent socks,
my feet were
two fish made
of wool,
two long sharks
sea-blue, shot
by one golden thread,
two immense blackbirds,
two cannons:
my feet
were honored
in this way
They were
so handsome
for the first time
my feet seemed to me
like two decrepit
firemen, firemen
of that woven
of those glowing

I resisted
the sharp temptation
to save them somewhere
as schoolboys
as learned men
sacred texts,
I resisted
the mad impulse
to put them
into a golden
and each day give them
and pieces of pink melon.
Like explorers
in the jungle who hand
over the very rare
green deer
to the spit
and eat it
with remorse,
I stretched out
my feet
and pulled on
the magnificent
and then my shoes.

The moral
of my ode is this:
beauty is twice
and what is good is doubly
when it is a matter of two socks
made of wool
in winter.


Consider Neruda’s word choice in the poem, his description of his socks and his feet, and then take a stab at writing your own poem for our closing session!

Closing Session:

April is National Poetry Month. To celebrate, take a few minutes today and compose a poem of your own! Any subject, any length, any meter is fine. You don’t have to share with your teacher – poems are often quite personal – but if you do choose to share, we will feature your work here on the blog!

Looking Ahead: Tomorrow’s Story

If you want to get ahead on things, here is the story we’re reading on Monday:


Love Poems <3<3


  • ELAGSE9-10RL4 Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in the text, including figurative and connotative meanings; analyze the cumulative impact of specific word choices on meaning and tone (e.g., how the language evokes a sense of time and place; how it sets a formal or informal tone.) Georgia ELA
  • ELAGSE9-10RL6 Analyze a particular point of view or cultural experience reflected in a work of literature from outside the United States, drawing on a wide reading of world literature. Georgia ELA
  • ELAGSE9-10RL2 Determine a theme or central idea of text and closely analyze its development over the course of the text, including how it emerges and is shaped and refined by specific details; provide an objective summary of the text. Georgia ELA

Learning Target
I can analyze Soneto XVII by Pablo Neruda by considering the translations of the poem so that I can write my own love poem.

Opening Session
Reading quiz! This quiz is over the reading you did yesterday, from page 103-127.

Work Session
my hero’s journey map and story worksheet (work on coloring map, boxes 4-6)
Consider “Soneto XVII” by Pablo Neruda in English and Spanish:

(Robin Williams reads the poem in English, from Patch Adams)

(The poem read in its original Spanish)
https://redpoppy.net/poem37.php (Both languages side by side)

After reading and analyzing Soneto XVII, use it as inspiration to write your own love sonnet. I’ll write the rhyme scheme for a sonnet on the board!

Closing Session
Continue your reading of The Alchemist to the end of page 153.


  1. Abraded
  2. Prognostications
  3. Condemn
  4. Treasonous
  5. Luminous
  6. Hookah
  7. Elixir
  8. Sentinel
  9. Habituated
  10. Stimulus

Formative (reading quiz, discussion of Soneto XVII, poems)

scaffolding, graphic organizers, language differentiation (poetry in Spanish)

AP Lit: The Man With Enormous Wings


  • CCR.R.1 Read closely to determine what the text says explicitly and to make logical inferences from it; cite specific textual evidence when writing or speaking to support conclusions drawn from the text. Common Core State Standards Common Core English/Language Arts
  • CCR.R.2 Determine central ideas or themes of a text and analyze their development; summarize the key supporting details and ideas. Common Core State Standards Common Core English/Language Arts
  • CCR.R.3 Analyze how and why individuals, events, and ideas develop and interact over the course of a text. Common Core State Standards Common Core English/Language Arts
  • CCR.R.4 Interpret words and phrases as they are used in a text, including determining technical, connotative, and figurative meanings, and analyze how specific word choices shape meaning or tone. Common Core State Standards Common Core  English/Language Arts
  • CCR.R.5 Analyze the structure of texts, including how specific sentences, paragraphs, and larger portions of the text (e.g., a section, chapter, scene, or stanza) relate to each other and the whole. Common Core State Standards Common Core English/Language Arts
  • CCR.R.9 Analyze how two or more texts address similar themes or topics in order to build knowledge or to compare the approaches the authors take. Common Core State Standards Common Core English/Language Arts

Learning Objective
Students will be able to analyze a short text and criticize it.

voice lesson
Read together :The Red Wheelbarrow by William Carlos Williams, analyzing for imagery. (Define)

Learning session

1. Read the short story : A very old Man with enormous wings by Marquez on p. 325. Chunk into 4 parts (see mellman’s copy)
2. Answer questions 1, 4, and parts of 5 (on page 329), using the picture landscape with the fall of icarus”. Do questions together and discuss.


Finish questions if not done in class

Extended time if necessary.

American Lit: Working Toward the Dream

Standard: ELAGSE11-12W1 Write arguments to support claims in an analysis of substantive topics or texts, using valid reasoning and relevant and sufficient evidence.

Learning Target: I can analyze multiple texts to identify the development of a recurring idea or theme.

Opening Session: Dolly Parton – 9 to 5

Work Session: Today we’re going to be talking about working towards the American Dream. We will be reading two pieces – a poem, “Who Burns for the Perfection of Paper” by Martin Espada, and an essay, “Roberto Acuna Talks about Farm Workers” by Studs Terkel. After we read and discuss, we will compare and contrast the two pieces, and then do the Second Read questions and chart on page 88 and 92.

Closing Session: 

Do the “Check your Understanding” Venn Diagram on page 92 in the book. Consider the ideas and tones of each piece we read today, and then compare and contrast them in a venn diagram 🙂


Formative (Class discussions)


Process (scaffolding, varied text length)

AP Lang: Literary Devices in “I Hear America Singing” and “I, Too”


  • ELAGSE11-12RL1 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. Georgia
  • ELAGSE11-12RL7 Analyze multiple interpretations of a story, drama, or poem (e.g., recorded or live production of a play or recorded novel or poetry), evaluating how each version interprets the source text. (Include at least one play by Shakespeare as well as one play by an American dramatist.) Georgia ELA
  • ELAGSE11-12RL4 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.) Georgia ELA

Students will look for literary devices in two poems and analyze why the authors chose to use them.

Opening Session
I have a handout for everyone with a whole bunch of literary devices on them. Take about five minutes, choose 3 literary devices from the list, and come up with an example of each. Then we’ll go around the room and everyone will share one of the examples they came up with. If all yours get taken, come up with another before we get to you!

Work Session
Today we’re reading two poems, “I Hear America Singing” https://www.poets.org/poetsorg/poem/i-hear-america-singing by Walt Whitman and “I, Too” https://www.poets.org/poetsorg/poem/i-too by Langston Hughes.

First, I want to look at literary devices in these. Find as many as you can and we’ll share them as a class. More important than finding the devices, consider WHY you think Whitman and Hughes chose to use them.

After we read each poem, I want to discuss who each author was. If you’re reading from home, check out these articles:
Whitman: https://www.poets.org/poetsorg/poet/walt-whitman
Hughes: https://www.poets.org/poetsorg/poet/langston-hughes

I want to take a few minutes to discuss these two authors and their wildly different perspectives. Why does each author have his specific point of view?

Closing Session
To close the week, let’s relate these two poems and their authors back to the American Dream. We’ll have a short discussion about how each poem relates to this idea of whether or not the American Dream is alive and achievable, and then I’d like everyone to write a short paragraph summarizing your point of view.

Formative (discussions, paragraphs)

Process (scaffolding, learning style)