Poetry and Paragraphs: a 16-Week Course of Integrated Literature, Research, and Paragraph Writing for Middle School and Early High School


Week 16: Parting Is Such Sweet Sorrow



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Week 16: Parting Is Such Sweet Sorrow
My apologies to William Shakespeare for my stealing the title of this chapter from his Romeo and Juliet.
For your last week, please write a reflective letter to your teacher. Tape the final draft of the letter into your notebook. This letter will help you contemplate what you have learned so that the learning sticks with you longer.
Letter Writing Instructions

Start your letter by addressing it to your teacher with the words "Dear Instructor." Then consider the following questions:


During this course, what did you learn about how poetry started?
Did you always write several drafts before you turned in a writing assignment, or did you start doing so this year?
What have you learned about where poems get their unique sound?
What did you learn about how to figure out the meaning of a poem?

Which writing assignments do you like best and why?


Which poems did you like best and why?
Have you improved your proofreading skills this semester?
Describe how you might use your knowledge of poetry in the future.

After you write your letter, please revise it until you have corrected all errors. You know what to do. You're a real pro now.


Tape the letter in your notebook and show it to your teacher. You may want to give a copy to the teacher, or you may want to give your teacher a poem. We teachers like things like that.
Farewell. May you think of fun words, poke under rocks, play games, read good books, and have a life that makes your parents proud.


Note to parents and teachers: once students know how to identify the major aspects of poetry, consider adding paraphrase and literary analysis to their regular lessons indefinitely so that they retain their knowledge of poetic devices, improve their reading and problem solving skills, and develop a mature appreciation for the written word.


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