Poetry

Lesson 4

Objective

Identify and interpret the literal meaning of personification in a poem.

Explain how personification affects the mood in a poem. 

Explain how the visual and aural depiction of the poem enchances or detracts from the meaning.

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Target Task

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Question 1

What is personification?

A.

A comparison between two unlike things

B.

Giving human qualities to inanimate things

C.

A comparison between two unlike things using like or as

D.

A word that describes a sound

Question 2

In the poem “Drought,” which verse below represents an example of personification? 

A.

“Scraping their bellies gray” (stanza 1)

B.

“Trackless” (stanza 2)

C.

“A few seeds” (stanza 4)

D.

“Under the sky” (stanza 4)

Why does Soto use personification in his poem? Choose two.

A.

To make descriptions more vivid

B.

To exaggerate the tone of the speaker

C.

To help readers understand and react emotionally to non-human characters

D.

To add a lyrical element to the poem

E.

To suggest that the poet lives in a fantastical world where inanimate things can act like humans

Question 3

How does the personification add to the mood in “Drought”? Explain in three to five sentences using at least one example from the text. 

Key Questions

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Read “The Walrus and the Carpenter” by Lewis Carroll.

  • What is being personified in stanza 1? What words make you think that? 
  • What is the poet literally trying to convey about the sun? 
  • What is being personified in stanza 2? Which words make you think that?
  • What is the poet literally trying to convey about the moon? 
  • Pick another example of personification from the poem and explain what the poet is trying to convey. Use details from the text to support your answer. 
  • How does the personification in the first two stanzas set a fantastical and nonsensical mood for the poem?

Watch the video “The Walrus and the Carpenter.” 

  • Does the visual and aural aspect of the film enhance or detract from the mood in the poem? 

Read “Rocking” by Gabriela Mistral. 

  • Pick an example of personification in the poem and explain what the poet is trying to convey. Use details from the text to support your answer.
  • Why does the poet use personification here? What is the impact of personification on the reader?
  • How does the personification affect the mood in the poem?

Vocabulary

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personification
mood

Notes

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This lesson connects with an essential question.

Common Core Standards

  • RL.6.4 — Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including figurative and connotative meanings; analyze the impact of a specific word choice on meaning and tone.

  • RL.6.7 — Compare and contrast the experience of reading a story, drama, or poem to listening to or viewing an audio, video, or live version of the text, including contrasting what they "see" and "hear" when reading the text to what they perceive when they listen or watch.