ERIC Number: ED307609
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1989-Apr
Reference Count: N/A
Teaching Poetry: Generating Genuine, Meaningful Responses. ERIC Digest.
Although many teachers force-feed the "meaning" of poetry to puzzled students or teach poetry by way of dissecting poetic techniques, more productive approaches to the study of poetry exist, as reflected in the literature in the ERIC database. Units of study can be organized around particular kinds of inquiry instead of around a literary genre or the themes of particular pieces. Readers can approach a poem by asking, "What does this say?" or "What does it matter?" Poetry can also sharpen thinking skills and teach children to deal with propaganda. In adult literacy education, the ambiguity of some poetry allows adult students to explore language in a non-threatening manner, since it invites unique explications rather than finding a right answer. The study of poetry can also be a suitable preparation for the study of law by teaching students to analyze language, recognize ambiguity, and develop consistency in interpretation--skills needed in the study of law. All of these approaches promote instruction that places responses to poetry within the control of students, who might shy away from poetry under teachers who lecture, quiz, and dictate a poem's meaning and significance. (MM)
Publication Type: ERIC Publications; Reference Materials - Bibliographies; ERIC Digests in Full Text
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: ERIC Clearinghouse on Reading and Communication Skills, Bloomington, IN.