Poetry and Pop Music (Gr.9)

Beginning of the school year to mid-October

During this unit you will be learning about poetry by analysing various verse texts, ranging from Robert Browning to Justin Bieber. We will focus on poetry as a genre and helping students understand “what is poetry?” It will focus on the rhythmic nature of verse, as well as other features of poetry including imagery, figuratively language and other common poetic techniques.

Studying poetry often seems like a waste of time for teenagers. “How am I ever going to use this?” is a common question. By showing students that many songs they hear every day use the same techniques as renowned poets, it is hoped that they will develop a better understanding of how English can be used to express deep feelings and emotions powerfully, melodically and even visually.

Students will be free to choose their own verse for study, as well as analysing classic poems, such as those by Wordsworth, Auden, Angelou and Browning.

Maya Angelou is one of the poets whom we’ll be studying in this unit.

To get started in learning about the analysis of poetry, please read “Why do we study poetry?” and “How do I analyse a poem?” which can be found on this page of the blog.

What you need to know…

  • What are poetic devices?
  • How and why are poetic devices used in poetry?
  • How can contextual factors influence the interpretation and analysis of poetry?

Here are the learning targets and the key terms and definitions for this unit.

Assessments: There are two essay assessments for this unit. One is completed over time and students can choose the poem they write about. The other is completed in-class and will be based on one of the romantic poems studied in class. See the assessment page for more information.