Introduce your students to the beauty of literature through the doorway of poetry. Enrich vocabulary while infusing reliably correct and sophisticated English language patterns into students' minds. How? By memorizing these classic poems and speeches.
Memorized (or "by heart") language was a mainstay of education for almost all of recorded history until about 60 years ago, when misguided educationists began to promulgate the idea that memorization, along with other types of rote learning, was harmful to children's creativity, understanding, and enjoyment of learning. Sadly, as is obvious to any intelligent observer of our culture, children are lacking a consistent source of reliably correct and sophisticated language patterns.
Excellence in Writing comes alongside to provide a tool to reintroduce you and your children to a vital but often neglected source of powerful and sophisticated linguistic patterning available to children: memorized language, especially memorized poetry.
Although memorizing and reciting daily so many poems may at first seem like a daunting project which will require large amounts of time, consider a few points:
Given the huge benefits of memorizing poetry, it may well be one of the best uses of your available school hours.
Recitation of memorized poems can easily be done away from a desk—perhaps in the car, while cooking or folding clothes, during a walk, etc.
Memorizing new poems gets easier in direct proportion to the number of poems already memorized; in other words the more you have learned, the faster you can learn more.
This teaching tool includes a workbook containing over 75 complete poems with speech and soliloquy recommendations. Instructions, memory charts and certificates, and poet biographies are included in the workbook.
If you are looking for a text providing the classical fundamentals of poetry (including tropes, meter, and scanning) Matt Whitling provides examples and exercises in The Grammar of Poetry.
Did you find this review helpful?