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EDUC 5340 01 
Lesson Plan One 
Ken Pilkey 0660311 
Katherine Bowlby 
September 18, 2014 
 
 
 
Context: This plan is based on the Prince Arthur Junior High School bell times for English classes at the 
grade 9 level. This means a half‐hour class followed the next day with a one hour class. The plan is 
adaptable to two one hour classes, but not intended for three (though expansion possibilities are 
endless). Class times for Junior High English range from 30 minutes to 1 Hour 10 minutes from what I’ve 
found online, determined at the school level of administration. General Curriculum Outcomes addressed 
by this Lesson Plan (for the Grade 9 English level) are highlighted in red at the end of the plan, namely 
1.1, 1.3, 2.1, 2.3, 3.2, 6.1, 6.2, 7.2, and 7.3. 
Goals: To encourage engaging analysis of the presented poem, particularly expanding awareness of 
metaphors as hidden layers of meaning. To stimulate discussion about seeing the world from another 
person’s point of view. To equip the students with a method for interpreting symbols in other forms of 
media they encounter such as television, movies and books, and to consider other‐culture perspectives. 
Method: The above goals are achieved in a 30‐minute “Method Inquiry” (Bomer 17) class, followed by a 
60‐minute “Workshop Classroom” (Bomer 13) class. The students will be well‐prepped to engage in the 
examination of the text by their second class, and the goals of the class are met by carefully chosen 
grade‐appropriate questions discussed in small groups and by the class as a whole; asking them to 
introduce occasions of personal experience and to explore an imagined scenario of a newcomer to their 
school.  

English 9 
Class 1 (30 minutes) 
5 minutes: Quick review of metaphor. A student volunteers, or is chosen, to read the Merriam‐Webster 
definition (easily understood at this grade level): 

met·a·phor
: a word or phrase for one thing that is used to refer to another thing in order to show or suggest that they
are similar
: an object, activity, or idea that is used as a symbol of something else
J.K. Rowling example: the Dementors in the Harry Potter stories as symbols of the struggles we go 
through sometimes; to rise up to them and keep them at a distance. 
 

Sources (not introduced): 

               Oprah interviews J.K. Rowling 2013 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uv1O6JJMC5o 
CTV News J.K. Rowling 2008 http://www.ctvnews.ca/rowling‐says‐she‐once‐had‐suicidal‐
thoughts‐1.284776 
10 minutes: Metaphors as hidden meanings in songs and movies and books. Things to discover if you 
have the tools to approach them. Two personal teacher examples for clarity. 
 
Mine: “All the diamonds in the world that mean anything to me, are conjured up by wind and            
sunlight sparkling on the sea”. –Bruce Cockburn (diamonds as the sparkles on the water; beauty as 
valuable) 
 
Mine: Narnia by C.S. Lewis. He was a Christian philosopher‐writer and intended Aslan the Lion to 
be a symbol or metaphor for God. 
10 minutes: Divide class in half down the middle. Ask one half of the class to come up with a metaphor 
that has “positive” (pleasant) connotations, and the other half to come up with a metaphor that has 
“negative” (dark or scary) connotations. They can talk about song lyrics, books, menga, comics… they 
can include movies and video games only if they are being very descriptive in the recount of the 
scenarios. If they are stumbling, a framework such as the “light side” and the “dark side” in Star Wars 
can be introduced. The groups agree on their respective best example and share their metaphor with 
the other group. 
5 minutes: If the students’ feedback suggests a fairly good grasp of the concept of metaphor through 
this review (they have had prior exposure to the concept by grade 9), then the Poem associated with 
Plan A is distributed with instructions to read it once or twice before their next class. Otherwise, the 
poem associated with Plan B is distributed.  

Plan A 
English 9 

Class 2 (1 hour) 

Let’s Just Be Dark 
Let's just be dark, then 
being shade and shadows that walk upright 
being night in daytime 
 
Let's just be dark, then 
the dark side of things 
sifting light through pigment darkly 
 illuminating some deep soul from within 
 
Let's just be dark, then 
with arms and legs hued in dark oak,  
ash, mahogany 
this body bronzed or blackened like trees 
 
Let's just be dark, then  
eyes and teeth flicker neon  
against this sun darkly 
clothes and colours hang like banners 
 
Let's just be dark, then 
neither friend nor foe of sunlight  
casting nightshade from the to and fro 
of this dark sojourn through the life. 
‐ Maxine Tynes 

30 minutes: The class is divided into groups of four, after being told that Maxine Tynes was a well‐
known poet from Dartmouth who taught at Auburn High and passed away just recently. They are asked 
to discuss the following questions, and designate someone in the group to take briefs notes so they can 
talk about their ideas when the class comes back together. 

1. What mood does the repetition of the first line accomplish, as the author does five times in the 
poem; what kind of feeling does it give? Is she saying, “let’s just give up”? 
 
2. What are the “shade and shadows” in the first stanza? How are the metaphors in the first and 
second stanzas describing that something or someone can be obvious and ordinary at the same 
time? 
 

3. The author compares her arms and legs to rare woods in the third stanza. What do you think 
she’s intending to say by using her metaphor this way? 
 
4. What could the author mean by “clothes and colours hang like banners” in stanza 4? Why can 
this be a good thing sometimes and a bad thing at other times? 
 
5. What specific audience is being addressed in this poem? What can people outside of the specific 
group learn from the poem? 
 
20 minutes: whole class discussion of the findings (while they remain in their respective groups of four) 
 
10 minutes: (Back in original seating) One of the things that comes across in this poem is that the author 
feels conspicuous and obvious, but not connected to a bigger community or understood by others. What 
are some of the ways you could help someone who felt different and isolated feel more comfortable 
and more welcome if they were a new student to your school? What if that person didn’t speak English 
well and wore entirely different clothes than you do? (Open forum ideas from class). 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

Plan B 
English 9 

Class 2 (1 hour) 

I Lost My Talk             
 
I lost my talk 
The talk you took away. 
When I was a little girl  
At Shubenacadie school.  
You snatched it away: 
I speak like you  
I think like you 
I create like you 
The scrambled ballad, about my world.  
Two ways I talk  
Both ways I say,  
Your way is more powerful.  
So gently I offer my hand and ask, 
Let me find my talk  
So I can teach you about me.  

‐  Rita Joe       
 
30 minutes: The class is divided into groups of four, after being told that Rita Joe was a well‐known poet 
from Cape Breton who received the Order of Canada. They are asked to discuss the following questions, 
and designate someone in the group to take briefs notes so they can talk about their ideas when the 
class comes back together. 
1. What could the author mean by “I lost my talk/the talk you took away”?
2. How does the rhythm and use of mostly single syllable words affect the pace, and how is this 
relevant to the subject matter in the poem?
3. The author is using the word “powerful” in a different way than we normally think of it at the 
end of stanza 4. What are some other words that could be used in its place to support the idea 
of power that the author is expressing?

4. Can you think of some personal experiences when you felt your voice or sense of expression 
were taken away? What about examples of entire groups of people that have had their ability to 
express themselves be taken away by other groups?  
5. The last stanza is a demonstration of the authors sense in inner strength, pride and power in a 
different way than you just discussed. What is she asking that we do? Why does she want to 
teach us about her?  What does she hope will be the outcome

20 minutes: whole class discussion of the findings (while they remain in their respective groups of four) 
 
10 minutes: (Back in original seating) One of the things that comes across in this poem is that the author 
feels pressured by others to be someone she’s not, and does not feel connected to a bigger community 
or understood by people. What are some of the ways you could help someone who felt different and 
scared feel more comfortable and more welcome if they were a new student to your school? What if 
that student was from another country and they couldn’t speak English very well? (Brief open forum 
discussion of suggestions). 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

ENGLISH LANGUAGE ARTS

GRADE 9

 

English Language Arts

 

General Curriculum Outcomes

Specific Curriculum Outcomes

GCO 1: Students will be expected to
speak and listen to explore, extend,
clarify, and reflect on their thoughts,
ideas. feelings, and experiences.

1.1

 
 
 

1.2

 

1.3

 

1.4

 
 
 
 

GCO 2: Students will be expected to
communicate information and ideas
effectively and clearly, and to respond
personally and critically.

2.1

2.2

 

2.3

 

2.4

 
 
 

GCO 3: Students will be expected to
interact with sensitivity and respect,
considering the situation, audience, and
purpose.

 

3.1
3.2

3.3

 
 
 

GCO 4: Students will be expected to
select, read, and view with
understanding a range of literature,
information, media, and visual texts.

4.1
4.2

 

4.3

 

4.4

 

4.5

 

examine others' ideas in discussion to extend their own
understanding
ask relevant questions calling for elaboration, clarification,
or qualification and respond thoughtfully to such questions
articulate, advocate, and support points of view, presenting
view points in a convincing manner
listen critically to assess the adequacy of the evidence
speakers give to evaluate the integrity of information
presented
participate constructively in conversation, small-group and
whole-group discussion, and debate, using a range of
strategies that contribute to effective talk
adapt vocabulary, sentence structure, and rate of speech to
the speaking occasion
give and follow instructions and respond to questions and
directions of increasing complexity
evaluate their own and others' uses of spoken language in a
range of contexts, recognizing the effects of significant
verbal and non-verbal language features
demonstrate active listening and respect for the needs,
rights, and feelings of others
demonstrate an awareness of the power of spoken language
to influence and manipulate, and to reveal ideas, values, and
attitudes
demonstrate an awareness that spoken language has
different conventions in different situations and cultures and
use language appropriate to the situation
select texts that address their learning needs and range of
special interests
read widely and experience a variety of young adult fiction
and literature from different provinces and countries
demonstrate an understanding that information texts are
constructed for particular purposes
use cueing systems and a variety of strategies to construct
meaning in reading and viewing increasingly complex print
and media texts
articulate their own processes and strategies for reading and
viewing texts of increasing complexity

 

LEARNING OUTCOMES FRAMEWORK: GRADES 7-9

99

ENGLISH LANGUAGE ARTS

General Curriculum Outcomes
 

GRADE 9

Specific Curriculum Outcomes
Students will be expected to

 
GCO 5: Students will be expected to

5.1

 interpret, select, and combine information
using a variety of strategies, resources,

 and technologies.
 
 
 

GCO 6: Students will be expected to
respond personally to a range of texts.

 

6.1

6.2

 
 GCO 7: Students will be expected to

7.1

respond critically to a range of texts,

  applying their understanding of language,
form, and genre.

 

7.2

 
7.3

GCO 8: Students will be expected to use
writing and other ways of representing
to explore, clarify, and reflect on their
thoughts, feelings, experiences, and
learnings; and to use their imagination.

100

8.1

independently access and select specific information to
meet personal and learning needs
select, from a wide range, sources appropriate to
their purposes
use the electronic network
develop approaches and strategies to conduct their
research
respond to some of the material they read or view by
questioning, connecting, evaluating, and extending
move beyond initial understanding to more
thoughtful interpretations
express and support points of view about texts and about
issues, themes, and situations within texts, citing
appropriate evidence
critically evaluate information presented in print and
media texts
assess relevance and reliability of available
information to answer their questions
demonstrate that print and media texts are constructed for
particular purposes and particular audiences
describe how specific text and genre characteristics
contribute to meaning and effect
respond critically to texts of increasing complexity
analyse and evaluate a text in terms of its form,
structure, and content
recognize how their own ideas and perceptions are
framed by what they read and view
demonstrate an awareness that personal values and
points of view influence both the creation of text and
the reader's/viewer's interpretation and response
explore and reflect on culture and reality as
portrayed in media texts
identify the values inherent in a text

use a range of strategies in writing and other ways of
representing to
- extend ideas and experiences
- explore and reflect on their feelings, values, and
attitudes
- consider others' perspectives
- reflect on problems and responses to problems
- describe and evaluate their learning processes and
strategies
- reflect on their growth as language learners and
language users

LEARNING OUTCOMES FRAMEWORK: GRADES 7-9