Reflection: Developing a Conceptual Understanding 'Mark but this flea' Unpacking a Whole Poem - Section 2: Unpacking the Complexity Inside "The Flea"


I really liked the strategy of reading part of the poem before we read the whole poem.  I feel like I gave my students a passage into the poem and I wasn't just leaving them to their own devices, which can frustrate struggling students before they start. 

Reading a few lines of the poem before students read the whole poem is like showing them the movie trailer to an upcoming blockbuster.  Here are the juicy bits you need to pay attention to, they probably only make a little bit of sense right now, but concentrate on making sense of those lines.  Once they read the whole poem, context plays an important role and they start making deeper and broader connections between the images. 

This is a strategy I plan to use when we start reading the Romantic poets. 


  Reading Part of the Poem Before Reading the Poem
  Developing a Conceptual Understanding: Reading Part of the Poem Before Reading the Poem
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'Mark but this flea' Unpacking a Whole Poem

Unit 1: Metaphysical Poets
Lesson 4 of 7

Objective: SWBAT analyze a poem using textual evidence

Big Idea: How can students read difficult literature without being overwhelmed?

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john donne
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