Spoken Word Assignment
Individually or in pairs create a 1-2 minute spoken word poem. Research topics of interest to you and write a poem that reflects your ideas as well as presents a message to the audience (1 page single spaced or 350 words).
Part 1: Write a spoken word poem that is highlighted and annotated (including identified devices and explanation of effectiveness, connotation/ denotation chart)
Part 2: Write a 1 paragraph analysis of the poem including: background information on the topic/ issue, main idea or message & connection to you, key devices used—elaborate on device choices and their effect on the poem
Part 3: Perform your Spoken Word poem
● You will choose a topic that is of interest to you or that you feel strongly about.
● You will brainstorm, draft and write your poem
● Decide what tone you want your poem to convey. How do you want to make the audience feel?
● You must use at least 4 of the poetic devices that we have analyzed in this unit, vivid imagery, allusions, effective use of rhythm & rhyming etc
● Poetry will be 1 – 2 minutes or 350 words max AT 3 MINUTES KICKED OFF THE STAGE
● You must complete all process work
● Your good copy should be highlighted and annotated, identifying each of the device used in a connotation/ denotation chart
● EVERYONE must be ready to present on the FIRST DAY OF PRESENTATIONS.
Characteristics of Spoken Word Poetry to take into consideration:
● Use of concrete language – Words and phrases project on the minds of the listeners vivid images, sounds, actions, and other sensations.
● Repetition – Repetition is a simple but powerful poetic device. Sometimes just the repetition of a key phrase or image, can help generate exciting poems.
● Rhyme – Rhyming enriches poems and performance, especially when used with skill
● Rhythm and Cadence – Because spoken word poems are most often performed on stage, the rhythm and cadence are important aspects of the performance. These elements allow a poet to add to the mood and meaning of the poem and makes listening to the poem more enjoyable. A spoken word poem is one step closer to a song.
● Attitude – “No attitude, no poem!” Feelings and opinions are the “stuff” poetry is made of – Each poet has a unique perspective and view of the world that no one else has. It is important that a spoken word poem embodies the courage necessary to share one’s self with the rest of the world.
● Persona – Spoken word poetry allows you to be anyone you want to be. You can write a poem in the “voice” of someone or something other than yourself or with a personality trait that is different from your own.
● Performance – Spoken word poems are written to be performed. Spoken word poets must keep the following elements of good stage presence in mind: Posture, eye contact, voice projection, enunciation, facial expressions, and gestures
● Memorization – If you have a poem memorized, you can focus more on the performance of the poem. It is very important to learn your poems by heart. If you are really in touch with the meaning and the emotional content of the poem, even if you forget a word or line, you can keep going. Learning by heart allows you to incorporate improvisation into your poem, which is one of the most important elements of spoken word poetry.
Complete the Connotation/ Denotation chart for your poem:
Section (Divide your poem into 4 rough parts) Denotation
What is the literal meaning of the poem? Connotation
What is the implied meaning of the poem?
What poetic devices does the poet use? How are they effective to the meaning of the poem? Note the line numbers when referencing devices.
What is the attitude of the poem? How do you know this?
Do any shifts occur in the poem? Where? How is the shift effective to the meaning of the poem?
What is the theme of the poem?
How do you personally connect to the main idea? Explain.
Paragraph analysis of the poem including: background information on the topic/ issue, main idea or message & connection to you, key devices used—elaborate on device choices and their effect on the poem: