Defining America: Poems, Essays, and Short Stories

Lesson 13
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ELA

Unit 1

7th Grade

Lesson 13 of 22

Objective


Explain how the structural choices in the poem, “Where You From?” help to develop meaning.

Readings and Materials


  • Poem: “Where You From?” by Gina Valdez 

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Target Task


Writing Prompt

In this poem, the poet writes in both English and Spanish. How does this structural choice develop the meaning of the poem?

Sample Response

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Key Questions


Close Read Questions

  • What do you notice about the way that the poet has used language in this poem?

  • What do you notice about the form (shape) of the poem? What does it look like? How does this structural choice develop the meaning of the poem?

  • Why did the poet most likely choose to enjamb the word “frontera”? How does this structural choice develop the meaning of the poem?

Discussion Questions

  • Reflect on your experience reading this poem.

    • If you don’t speak Spanish, what was it like to read a poem in a language you don’t understand? Have you ever been in a situation where you did not speak the language everyone else was speaking?
    • If you do speak Spanish, what was it like to read a poem written in both Spanish and English? Have you ever been in a situation where you did not speak the language everyone else was speaking?

Exit Ticket

Monitor student understanding of this lesson objective with an Exit Ticket.

Vocabulary


Academic

enjambment

n.

when a word, sentence, or phrase runs over from one poetic line to the next, without punctuation

structure

n.

the way text is organized. 

Homework


To ensure that students are prepared for the next lesson, have students complete the following reading for homework. Use guidance from the next lesson to identify any additional language or background support students may need while independently engaging with the text.

  • Article: “What is DACA and Who Are the DREAMers?” by Anti-Defamation League 

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Common Core Standards


  • RL.7.4 — Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including figurative and connotative meanings; analyze the impact of rhymes and other repetitions of sounds (e.g., alliteration) on a specific verse or stanza of a poem or section of a story or drama.
  • RL.7.5 — Analyze how a drama's or poem's form or structure (e.g., soliloquy, sonnet) contributes to its meaning.

Supporting Standards

L.7.5
L.7.5.a
L.7.5.b
L.7.5.c
L.7.6
RL.7.1
RL.7.2
RL.7.10
SL.7.1
SL.7.6
W.7.1
W.7.1.a
W.7.1.b
W.7.4
W.7.9
W.7.9.a
W.7.10
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Lesson 12

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Lesson 14

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