While this is an academically focused class, understanding the effort and critical decision making that goes into the creative process of literature is important as well. Knowing this helps us to better appreciate the artistry these authors share with the world. Further, creative works give students a chance to try out the various concepts they have seen illustrated throughout the unit.
On the plus side, you are creating art, which means traditional grading systems don’t apply. What I look for in this assignment is a sense that you have put effort into the creative process. Beyond this, many of you are already artists in your own right; now is your moment to showcase those skills to the world!
To complete this assignment successfully, you need to be willing – like a poet – to show a piece of yourself to the world. We have read poems that incorporate metaphor, rhythm & rhyme, repetition, anger, joy, humor, etc. This assignment asks you to try these poetic devices out for yourself; not just analyzing them, but actually putting them into practice.
Your job is to write a slam poem that highlights an issue you feel strongly about. You may be angry, humorous, frustrated, sad, etc. However, think carefully about how you will present your ideas: This is not a speech, this is poetry. That means you need to have some sense of rhythm to your work. You also need to include strong imagery and/or that helps to create a concrete understanding of theme for your listener.
Think about the slam poems we listened to: Each poem has a straightforward, easy to follow, somewhat universal theme. These are not overly complicated or mysterious; they are, like an argumentative essay, trying to prove an opinion or point.
As you write, you must include at least four  different items from the list below:
1. alliteration 2. internal rhyme 3. end rhyme 4. metaphor 5. simile 6. personification 7. onomatopoeia 8. tactile imagery 9. visual imagery 10. aural imagery 11. hyperbole 12. apostrophe 13. repetition
The second part of this assignment is to actually perform your composition. You need to record a video using FlipGrid and upload it to Canvas.
However, you may choose to present your poem in whatever way you feel most comfortable. You may choose to put artwork or a representative object up on screen and read from off camera. You may choose to have a friend or family member [or even multiple friends/family members] read the poem for you.
If you are feeling really brave – and like a true slammer – you may present the poem yourself, speaking directly to the audience.
It is up to you.
Think of this like a safer version of the open mike night; you get to perform, but no one gets to comment 🙂
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