English teachers: Do you assign creative writing?

Discussion in 'Secondary Education' started by ms.irene, Jan 21, 2015.

  1. ms.irene

    ms.irene Connoisseur

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    Jan 21, 2015

    I teach English 10 and am teaching a poetry unit and would like to ask my students to challenge themselves by writing poetry. However, I am wondering if this is appropriate since there is not a CC standard specifically for writing poetry. We have worked extensively with reading and writing about poetry, but I want to go beyond and experiment with asking students to create their own poems. What do you think?
     
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  3. dgpiaffeteach

    dgpiaffeteach Aficionado

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    I think it's fine IMO. You can always work on other standards like revising, publication, etc...
     
  4. Linguist92021

    Linguist92021 Phenom

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    Jan 21, 2015

    Yes you can if time allows for it, especially for home work, or at home project. I don't do it (we don't give homework) and I know my students would shut down. I have a very few that are creative enough to do that, 95 % of them wouldn't.
    I can understand it, if I was told to write a poem, it'd be a long painful process.
     
  5. Mrs. K.

    Mrs. K. Enthusiast

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    I've had some luck with assigning imitative poetry, and letting students work in pairs. For example, they are given a sonnet to analyze, and then write one on the perspective about love in the original using contemporary language and the same rhyme scheme.
     
  6. ms.irene

    ms.irene Connoisseur

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    Jan 27, 2015

    Thanks for the great ideas! I have had students write three poem drafts based on various starters (reading poems around a certain theme or genre, listening to music, etc) and will have them workshop in groups this week. I haven't read their drafts in-depth yet as I want to let them pick one to workshop and take to the publication level, but in going around to check their work, I am really excited about the level of effort i'm seeing and can't wait to read their work more closely!
     
  7. bluegill

    bluegill Rookie

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    Jan 27, 2015

    I believe poetry is covered under the standards because it is a type of narrative. The jargon has changed a bit; it used to also say "and other creative texts" as I recall. Even if you didn't think it was covered under a writing standard, writing a poem would target HOTS in the reading literature domain.

    Part of my curriculum always includes some kind of creative writing. I like to teach short stories because that is what I am most comfortable with. Whenever I try to write a poem/song, I get major writer's block. Poetry has to be the most difficult thing to teach - reading or writing. I am just finishing an epic unit on Beowulf with my seniors and AM SO RELIEVED. Used to be my favorite work! They ruined it for me!

    I am going to do a little song analysis project with them next to segue into a writing unit.
     
  8. Rockguykev

    Rockguykev Connoisseur

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    Jan 28, 2015

    The fact that this question even has to be asked is disgusting (and I don't mean the person posting, I mean the system that leads to the question).

    I'm so thankful nobody pays attention to social studies. I'd go nuts if I had to strictly justify every single task I assign my students by a specific standard.

    So, go for it. It is far more important that we teach kids than we rigidly stand by an almost-certainly-misinterpreted set of standards.
     
  9. ms.irene

    ms.irene Connoisseur

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    Jan 28, 2015

    Thanks again for the thoughts -- and Rockguy, I agree with you. I hated to even feel the need to post the question, but with all the discussion of Common Core going on in our district, I felt I needed to be sure I had my rationale down!

    I feel extra justified now since while looking over some prep materials for the CAHSEE (CA High School Exit Exam) I realized that there may well be poetry analysis questions on the test which my students will be taking next week. So I can rest assured that what I am doing definitely connects to the expectations.

    Bluegill, it's interesting to me that even among other English teachers, poetry is seen as among the hardest genres to teach -- I personally love it and love teaching it, though! I think everyone has a favorite and least-favorite genre -- I personally dislike most of the short stories that get taught at the HS level and could never write a decent short story myself.
     
  10. ChrisBrown2

    ChrisBrown2 New Member

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    Jan 28, 2015

    asking students to create their poetry

    I think this is an excellent idea, even though there are no cc standards. The classroom is about learning all the time and being eclectic. Use what works in your classroom, to convey the message to the children. That is what is important. Making the connections.
     
  11. dgpiaffeteach

    dgpiaffeteach Aficionado

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    I think what's nice about the English standards is you can pretty much always find something that works. There are plenty of writing and editing standards that could work.
     
  12. teacherguy111

    teacherguy111 Cohort

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    Jan 28, 2015

    Go for it.
     
  13. ms.irene

    ms.irene Connoisseur

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    Jan 28, 2015

    Gone and did! :)
     

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