Poetry Recitation

Harlem Renaissance Poetry Recitation: 100 points

Prompt: Recite a poem written by an African-American poet.

Discussion of the prompt: Choose a poem written by an African-American poet to perform aloud to your peers.  Poets can be from the Harlem Renaissance – Langston Hughes, Countee Cullen, Claude McKay – but feel free to step outside the bounds of that time frame.  Most contemporary poets – Gwendolyn Brooks, Alice Walker, Maya Angelou – were influenced by these groundbreakers.

You will be presenting your poem of choice orally.  Good public speaking requires speakers to practice at least 6 times before presenting something to an audience.

  • Only memorized texts can earn an “A”; however, memorizing alone cannot earn you an “A” for this project.
  • If memorization is difficult, you can take a letter grade deduction and use notes.
  • If performing in front of your peers is difficult, you can choose to deliver your lines to Borger before or after school for a letter grade deduction.
  • If you are not prepared to go the day you are scheduled, you will receive a letter grade deduction for each day late lines are delivered.
  • Just reading your poem cold for the first time out loud in front of the class will not garner full credit; however, some credit is better than none.
  • If you are anxious about performing and don’t want to take a letter grade deduction, you may perform in the back of the class rather than in front of the class.
  • Longer poems earn more credit than shorter poems; on average, poems or poem selections should be roughly 20 lines long.  Prose pieces can be roughly 75-100 word.
    • If you are cutting a longer section, your piece must make sense and stand alone – do not just stop reading at the 20 line / 75 word point or you will receive a letter grade deduction.
    • If you choose a considerably longer selection you can earn up to a letter grade addition to your score.  Just poorly delivering a longer piece may not earn you extra credit though.  You must practice for longer selections to pay off.
    • No poem may be repeated in the same class period.  There’s enough art out there to go around.
    • Poem selections are first come, first serve. Students must have their selections approved by Friday 03/14. Sign-up will be on the cabinet by Borger’s desk.
    • Poetry recitation will occur in tandem with Harlem Renaissance Poster Presentations starting Monday 03/17.