Saturday, January 15, 2011
I was laughing to myself the other day, totally in sympathy, when I saw how the kids at school were struggling with poetry. With poetry, it either clicks right away and you get it or it doesn't and you have to struggle through. I have seen tons of kids struggle but enjoy the rewards of their struggle when they have their aha! moment. Compounding this is finding poems for a certain theme and understanding how to share and reword it into a critical essay with a reasonable amount of intelligence. Again, easy if it clicks - a real curse when it doesn't.
I was talking to a couple kids how I had had a themed poetry assignment when I was in high school and how I dealt with it. At that time, I mentioned that we also had a very small library and, unlike today, absolutely no internet for resources. Being a typical teenager, I procrastinated until I had only the weekend to do this long assignment and I had to work one of the two days at my part-time job. I think we had to find ten or so poems to use. I hit a dead-end getting poems because the library was closed by the time I was off work but I wasn't willing to call it quits - my marks were good and I wasn't willing to take a fall, especially because of my own idiocy. After a brief moment of thought (remember - time was of the essence), I sat down and popped off ten or so poems of varying lengths and styles dealing with the theme. I added made up names for the poets/authors and anonymous ones for some of the others. It was easy to write a critical review of the them because I had written them and knew exactly what the poet intended and the styles that were used! As I recall, I got one of my best marks for that assignment.
I still laugh to myself when I think of it!
(That little microsoft guy above says it all!)