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British Literature – English 11H – Kueffner/Truran Romanticism (1798-1832) Overview and Rationale Literature helps us get

in touch with the world, the past, and even our own feelings. Think about it—you may know what happened during a historical event, but to read about it from someone who was actually there gives it a certain depth, like colorizing an old black and white photo. A perfectly crafted piece of literature can be just as effective as a photograph. Literature helps us tap into the human psyche and gives us insight into what the great innovators and thinkers of the world actually thought. It challenges us to formulate our own opinions about the world and humankind. Now, as we move onto our next unit of the year, it’s your turn to dig into your own thoughts, opinions, and feelings through romanticism. The romantics sought to embrace the human experience and all of the emotions, highs, and turbulence it entails. Since this unit is about exploration of the self, a majority of the work will be driven by you, the students. The varying projects ask you to connect the many poets and their writing to who you are. They are, after all, writing to you. Embrace it. Explore it. Celebrate your existence—your humanity. Questions to explore • • • What can people learn from nature? Is emotion stronger than reason? When is ordinary extraordinary?

Objectives • • Cite strong and thorough textual evidence to support analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as inferences drawn from the text 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 Write arguments to support claims in an analysis of substantive topics or texts, using valid reasoning and relevant and sufficient evidence

Major Assignments Poetry Annotations and Journal Since a lot of our time will be devoted to projects and group work, some of the reading will be done on your own. This places more emphasis on you to take responsibility for your learning, helps prepare you for higher-level English classes, and helps develop your close reading skills. We will go through this as a class first. 1. There are a certain number of poems we will read throughout the unit. Your job is to find at least five poems outside of what we read for this assignment. 2. Annotate each poem. Look for imagery, rhyme scheme, theme, contradictions, paradoxes, mood, tone, etc.

3. When you are done with the annotations, write a paragraph response to it. There are no specific guiding questions for this part; you simply respond to one or more aspects of the poem itself. They can be personal or informal. 4. These will be checked at random so stay caught up! 5. At the end of the unit, you will turn in a specified number of entries as part of your grade. A Blake-Inspired Companion Poem This asks us to explore the idea of a poem having a companion and to try your hand at writing one. 1. Brainstorm a list or a cluster map using words that you believe would be appropriate to a small child, and remember that much of which you take for granted would seem new and wonderful to a younger you. Pay attention to what you would find positive and interesting to a child. Avoid the negatives. Like William Blake, we are trying to capture the wonderment and imagination of childhood. 2. Look at your experiences at Haslett High School and, like Blake, try to recognize and attempt to recognize the “evil” around you. 3. Again, brainstorm or make a cluster map. This time use words which describe the “evils” in your surroundings. 4. Look back at both lists or clusters. Go back and add any rich nouns, verbs, adjectives, and adverbs which you may have left out. Add words which represent all of your senses. 5. Go back and look at “The Lamb” and “The Tyger.” Notice that “The Tyger” from Songs of Experience is the companion to “The Lamb” from Songs of Innocence. Notice their similarities and differences as you figure out what makes them “companions.” 6. Without necessarily modeling Blake’s style, follow his concept of a companion poem. Using your lists or clusters, write a poem which would fall under the heading Songs of Experience and a companion poem which would fall under Songs of Innocence. Music and Poem Comparison This assignment will help build our understanding of depth, voice, and overall reading of poetry. 1. Listen to a song that relates to an aspect (or multiple aspects) of romanticism. 2. Read the poems “I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud,” by William Wordsworth and “When I Have Fears That I May Cease to Be” by John Keats. We then discuss the poems and how they relate to the song. 3. Break up into groups, pick a poem by one of the romantic poets and find a song that correlates with it. 4. Design an in-depth presentation: discussion questions, copies of the poem and song lyrics for the entire class, the song, and an audience participation plan are needed.

Poetry Interpretation Project This individual or collaborative project asks you to select a poem and interpret it through a means of creative expression. The format is entirely up to you: a song, companion poem, collage, painting, drawing, board game, etc. 1. Find a poem from one of our romantic poets. It should be a poem that you can really connect with. This cannot be from your music comparison project, but it can be from your poetry annotations journal. 2. Annotate the poem and think of a creative way to interpret it. 3. Present your poem and your interpretation to the class, and turn in your annotations for a grade. Close Reading Groups This is a skill we will continue to hone throughout this unit. While you will be practicing it at home quite often, you will be working in groups at school to learn from each other improve your skills. 1. On select days, your group will receive a poem from one of our romantic poets to close read. 2. Together, you will come to a consensus on an interpretation of the poem. 3. Each group will informally present and defend their interpretation using textual evidence. 4. At the end of the session, we will vote on whose was most convincing. Assessments At the end of our unit, you will turn in your poetry annotations journal. In addition, we will have a unit test and an in-class timed writing. Throughout our unit, we will look at argumentative writing—specifically working on recognizing and combating counter-arguments. This will not only help you tremendously on the ACT (they look for recognition of counter-arguments), but on the AP English exam next year if you choose to enroll in that class.