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Edexcel IGCSE English Literature (9-1) 4ET1 | Unseen Poetry Anthology

Richard Gent | Friday April 26, 2019

Categories: KS4, 9-1 IGCSE, 9-1 IGCSE English Literature, IGCSE English Literature Edexcel

Unseen Poetry Anthology

In preparing students to respond to unseen poetry texts, you should draw from as wide a range of poems as possible. This could include students’ choice of poems, reflecting their own interests and enthusiasms around themes that might interest them using such websites as Poem Finder. There is scope to explore different traditions, forms and genres, as well as different poetic styles and techniques. You might find it an efficient use of time to initially treat as unseen poems, the poems from the named poems in the Pearson/Edexcel anthologies. It is often helpful to group poems by theme, as this Edusites Poetry Anthology has, to aid comprehension, so that comparisons and contrasts can be readily drawn.

It is probably helpful to begin with more accessible poems, starting with ones which are familiar to your students, possibly written in contemporary English and/or which have a distinctive style that students will readily recognise. However, make sure you also introduce students to poems that appear more challenging at first reading, such as those written in styles or from cultures that might be unfamiliar to modern readers such as those from the Caribbean or from the Far East.

It is important that you give students opportunities to discuss and explore poems individually and in groups, to develop understanding that poems can be interpreted differently by different readers, and that personal response needs to be justified and supported with evidence.

Introductory activities to support understanding and responding to unseen texts should focus on developing the skills of close reading of the poems. Through these activities students should become familiar with recognising and discussing a range of poetic devices, building on their knowledge and understanding.

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