- Bellringer: Talk with a partner to review the meanings of connotation and denotation. With your partner, talk about the difference in meanings using the words "house" and "home."
- Introduce the activity by using the following introduction:
Close your eyes and think back to your clearest memory from when you were a small child. Do you remember where you were? What you were wearing? What you were doing before, during, and after? Do you remember specific colors, smells, sounds?
Have students share their thoughts and experiences with the whole group.
- Read the poem aloud to students as they listen.
- Either provide the students with a copy of the poem or have them access the poem via the internet at http://www.poetryfoundation.org/poem/172103. Have students read the poem themselves and contemplate possible meanings of the poems. Discuss possible meanings as a whole group.
- Have students annotate the poem for connotation and denotation. Have them mark words that can be perceived as positive and mark differently words that can be perceived as negative. If you provide students with a copy of the text, they may use highlighters to annotate. If students are using computers and internet to annotate text, they may copy and paste the text into a Google Doc and use the highlight feature to annotate the text on the computer. Finished products may be shared and submitted via Google Chrome.
- After students have submitted annotated poems, as a whole group, discuss possible annotations. Draw a T-chart on the board, one side being positive and one being negative. Have students come to the board and fill in the chart with some of their responses. (You may provide another copy of the text for them to view as they complete this part of the lesson.) The chart may include:
Positive – waltz, papa, romped, held
Negative– whiskey, dizzy, death, unfrown, battered, scraped, beat, caked hard by dirt