Reflection: Students with Disabilities Types of Rhythm in "Sarah Sylvia Cynthia Stout" - Section 3: Scanning Rhythm in Sarah Sylvia Cynthia Stout


If I were to give this assignment in this exact format to my co-taught class, it would be a disaster.  Not all students would be able to handle the freedom, they wouldn't know where to start, annotating the lines would take twenty minutes and that's not the focus of this lesson, and there wouldn't be enough coffee in the world for me. 


What's a teacher to do?  Differentiate! Takes more time upfront, but saves one's sanity in the classroom.  Or, let's face it, if you're reading this you more than likely teach middle school or know someone who teaches middle school, and you know that the idea of sanity in a middle school is nebulous at best.  We can pretend, though. 


What I'll do, instead, is have the entire poem up on the board so we can all read it. 

Then I'll create a handout with the lines separated more than they are on the poem.  The focus of this activity is not to analyze the main ideas, it's to analyze the effect of rhythms. Although you certainly could focus on main ideas and theme, but I'm not right now.  You could do both.   I've chosen to focus on rhythm, so I'm adapting my handout for that purpose.


I've chosen lines that focus on a variety of feet (iambs, dactyls, spodees, etc.)  I'll take out the lines that I'm not focusing on due to difficulty, space on the paper, or repetition of types of feet, unwillingness to read a line over and over, etc.)


For each section, I'll identify what type of feet are found in that 'stanza' (group of lines).  For additional differentiation, I'll identify what type of feet are found in each line.   Yup, there will be two different handouts (three if you count the one for honors).  Each student will get the handout that they need.  


Why go to all this trouble?  So students can learn. If I don't go to this trouble, not all students learn. 

  Students with Disabilities: Modeling and Choices
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Types of Rhythm in "Sarah Sylvia Cynthia Stout"

Unit 8: Analyzing Ballads, Sonnets, and Popular Music
Lesson 9 of 14

Objective: Students will be able to analyze a poem's rhythm by identifying the pattern of stressed and unstressed syllables (scanning).

Big Idea: Iambic, trochee, anapest, dactyl, oh my!

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