Need an engaging introduction to your poetry unit or Black History Month activities? This guided close reading lesson for Langston Hughes’ “The Negro Speaks of Rivers” will guide your class in an exploration of theme development using the TPCASTT poetry analysis model. As you lead the discussion with a slideshow presentation, students take notes on a poetry analysis graphic organizer in their interactive notebooks.
♦ Poetry analysis slideshow presentation for you to project on your whiteboard
♦ Printable foldable graphic organizers to analyze elements of poetry
♦ Teacher Guide with discussion questions, sample answers, & rubric
♦ PDF file format for easy use on any computer
(1) Title slide
(2-4) How to set up your interactive notebook
(6) “The Negro Speaks of Rivers” poem by Langston Hughes
(9) Locate the rivers on a world map
(12) Attitude (tone)
(14) Title revisited
(17) Compare reading the poem to watching a video
(18-20) Sample answers
(1) Product overview
(2) Table of Contents
(3) Tips for using interactive notebooks
(4) Presentation layout and navigation
(5-9) Slide-by-slide discussion guide for Langston Hughes’ “Rivers” poem with questions
(10-11) Printable interactive notebook graphic organizers for poetry elements and analysis
Make one copy per student of the foldable interactive notebook pieces (pages 10-11) that students will need to complete the lesson activities.
How to Use this Langston Hughes Poetry Analysis Lesson
The ready-to-use slideshow presentation is designed to be projected onto a whiteboard to guide your students through the lesson. Pages 5-9 of the Teacher Guide provide notes that you may use to facilitate the discussion of Langston Hughes’ poems. You may want to print the Teacher Guide or have it open on a tablet for reference during the lesson.
The lesson includes links to two outside sources:
a copy of “The Negro Speaks of Rivers” on poetryfoundation.org
a multimedia presentation of the poem on vimeo.com
As you read and discuss the poem, students will:
♦ Consider the significance of the title
♦ Paraphrase the poem line by line
♦ Discuss connotations of important words
♦ Identify the speaker’s tone
♦ Determine the theme of the poem
♦ Analyze the poet’s use of allusion, repetition, and assonance, and their part in developing the theme
♦ Compare the written poem to a multimedia presentation
RL.7.1 Cite several pieces of textual evidence to support analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as inferences drawn from the text.
RL.7.2 Determine a theme and analyze its development over the course of a text; provide an objective summary of a text.
RL.7.4 Determine the meaning of words and phrases used in a text, including figurative and connotative meanings; analyze the impact of rhyme and other sound devices on meaning and tone.
RL.7.7 Compare and contrast a written story, drama, or poem to its audio, filmed, staged, or multimedia version, analyzing the effects of techniques unique to each medium (e.g., lighting, sound, color, or camera focus and angles in a film).
W.7.9 Draw evidence from literary or informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research.
RL.8.1 Cite the textual evidence that most strongly supports an analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as inferences drawn from the text.
RL.8.2 Determine a theme and analyze its development, including relationship to characters, setting, and plot; provide an objective summary of a text.
RL.8.4 Determine the meaning of words and phrases used in a text, including figurative and connotative meanings; analyze the impact of specific word choice, including analogies and allusions, on meaning and tone.
W.8.9 Draw evidence from literary or informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research.
This free poetry analysis activity is an excerpt from the Langston Hughes Poetry Unit.
Use this lesson along with coordinating lessons for The Harlem Renaissance & Langston Hughes, Langston Hughes “Mother to Son,” and Langston Hughes “Harlem [Dream Deferred].”
Save 20% by purchasing all items in the Langston Hughes Poetry Unit.
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