They alsofilled them with the courage to expect more of themselves and go for their dreams. One way they did this was to make opportunities for the kids to have enriching experiences such as attendingprofessional concerts, seeing Broadway plays, and Memorizing Poetry. The principle of the school came up with a program where the kids could gain school credit by memorizing certain poems. The poetry program was called Doug’s Dead Poet’s Society.
I have so many books that have influenced myself as an illustrator, as well as influenced my mothering. I have been wanting to share them for a while, and I was SO happy when I found this favorite of mine at a used bookstore in Downtown Salt Lake City. Granfa Grig Had a Pig is a collection of mostly forgotten nursery rhymes, mixed with a few favorites, and illustrated by the amazing Wallace Tripp, who won the Boston Globe-Horn Book Award for Picture Books for this book.
And rightly so. It’s full of illustration after illustration that completely take you right into the poems. My children can’t take their eyes off the pictures, and it’s sweet to see’because I would study this for hours as a child. I can really see how this book has influenced my art as an illustrator. It’s really fun to see that now as I look back.
I’ll second Rick’s in as much as you shouldn’t be afraid of a multitude of images. NEVER THE LESS, timing is everything. Numbers work mnemonically only when translated into imagery, but poetry is already imagery.
Don’t turn beautifully organized words into something less. For me poetry, especially classic lyrics, is about pace, beat and rhythm. Use this. For instance; if you regularly listen to music, you’ll probably know several lyrics or at least parts. You don’t do this by actively Memorizing them using a memory system, but by listening and following the system already in the music. Keats has plenty of that music hidden in between his lines. Find it, and use it.
the combination of blue sky, sitting outdoors in a cafe together with doses of caffeine, nicotine and good literature satisfies me more any boy has ever bothered to. I am beginning to understand that in order to discover my existentialist purpose I need to reach deeper and further into what the world surrounding me has to offer. some probably view Memorizing Poetry and entire paragraphs of classic works as a waste of time but to me it equals the importance of brushing my teeth in the morning (I realize how inappropriate that parallel is).
it is almost an unconscious process. sometimes it is hard to define the substantiality of some of those parts in terms of their importance to me and nobody else. because in a way when you are reading a book there is a certain intimacy that creeps into the space between your mind and the pages before you. you want it to be unique. you want that moment and the whole experience to be yours. how do you take something that is greater than yourself and make it your own. in words of william forrester it is a soup question.
Neat (& vg) idea. : ) Ever notice how you can still remember the poems/songs that you learned in grade school. I believe it’s generally true that there are specific stages in our development when things that are committed to memory, actually ‘stick’ there better & can be recalled more easily than stuff that you’ve learned later.
4) It makes other things more enjoyable. I remember standing in front of a beautiful tapestry and realizing that the poem ‘Aedh Wishes for the Cloths of Heaven’ by Yeatswas augmenting my ability to appreciate the art. I could see the words of the poem woven into the fabric, ‘enwrought with golden and silver light.’ I could imagine the artist laying the work at my feet, and it reminded me to tread softly because I was treading on dreams.
Watch Sir Ken Robinson read that poem here. Children can learn through Poetry a deeper appreciation for the beauty around them as they internalize the beauty of the poetic lines and apply it to what they see. There’s a reason that the boys in Dead Poet’s Society got hooked on Poetry and resurrected the club to celebrate it: it made their school experience overall more enjoyable (well, at least until the one boy committed suicide, but that was in no way the Poetry‘s fault, you must agree).
Take a break from time to time. Give yourself a chance to rest and your brain the opportunity to absorb the material. Sometimes pushing harder and longer will only result in frustration.
Stop intermittently, walk around, and give your conscious mind something else to occupy it for a little while. Better yet, take a nap. Studies show that we tend to learn better when the material is reviewed prior to sleep. Read more on Memorizing Poetry