Poem: Evening in Paradise by John Milton

Before reading the poem, do research on John Milton.

Image result for paradise lost

-Who was he?

-What kind of writer was he? Explain.

-He wrote Paradise Lost. What is it about? and

-Now, read the poem and say what you understand from it using your own words. (work on vocabulary)

Some help? Click here

Take notes of everything to comment and debate in class

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Ode on Melancholy

What is melancholy? Can you find a definition?

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Check this out: https://genius.com/John-keats-ode-on-melancholy-annotated?referent_id=4625796#note-4625796

Now watch this video and amalyse the poem in full using one of the guide for analysing poetry that you can find in your booklet.



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Heart and Mind (this will take us 2 classes)

After reading the poem, let´s get deeper into it.

Task 1 Take notes about:

-writer´s background

-Samson and Hercules (parallels)

Task 2 Write what the poem is about using your own words

Task 3 Watch this annotated video and take notes

Task 4 Write an essay on the poem (choose 1 option from the presentation)

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Writing essays for AS Language and Literature

Pay attention to these tips to write essays and take notes.

Prepare your own document to use whenever you write your essays and post it in your blogs. Use this for your next virtual period activity.

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Literature Nobel Prize

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After reading about Bob Dylan and why he waas chosen for theLiterature Nobel Prize, let`s analyse some of his best lyrics.

Top 10 Lyrics

Bob Dylan teaches you everything about LOVE in 7 songs

Choose one, read his lyrics and analyse it. Share this with the rest of the class.

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Tiger in the Menagerie

Let`s start by listening to the writer of this poem

Now, let`s listen to Emma Jones reading her poem

Last year, some students prepared this presentation on the poem we are reading today:

Watch this video with the poem annotated and make a list of things we have not said in class. Prepare a post in your blog with a deep analysis of this poem.

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The Stoat

Hey kids!

This is our first virtual period activity.

After reading this story in class, get in pairs and answer the following questions in pairs. Share a drive with me. Don´t forget to include the two names in the document.

DEADLINE: March 20

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“The Stoat” by John McGahern (1978)


            John McGahern- (1934- 2006)

. Irish writer of novels, plays, and short stories

. Mother died of cancer when the author was 10 years old.

. Had a distant relationship with his father as the father was physically abusive

to the children

. Author was the oldest of 7 children

. Won scholarships to school and college, became a teacher and writer

. Father was a police officer, mother was a school teacher



            Stoat: type of weasel that lives in Europe.  Called an ermine in winter when

its coat changes to white from brown.  Related to the ferret.

Tussock: a small area of grass that is thicker and longer than the grass

around it.

Ruefulness: expressing sorrow or regret in a slightly humorous way

Aura: air, atmosphere

Solemnity: seriously, formally, in a dignified manner

Foreboding: feeling that something bad will happen, apprehension

Widower: a man whose wife has died and he has not remarried

Farce: an absurd event, a mockery, travesty, absurdity


 Reading Questions:

  1. Describe the protagonist’s relationship with his father. This story is autobiographical (based on real events in the author’s life).  What does this tell us about the author?


  1. What purpose does the uncle serve in the story? The uncle is not autobiographical, so why would McGahern invent him?
  1. What is the father seeking? Why?


  1. How does he go about getting what he seeks? Does it work?


  1. Why does he change his mind?


  1. What is an allegory? (use a dictionary of literary terms)
  1. Explain the allegorical elements in this story.

Second virtual activity: ESSAY

DEADLINE: March 27 (Hand in. do not share a document)

Discuss the theme of death as portrayed in the short story THE STOAT by John McGahern.

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Review on “The Lost Woman”

The Lost Woman (1983)
Patricia Beer
My mother went with no more warning
than a bright voice and a bad pain.
Home from school on a June morning
And where the brook goes under the lane
I saw the back of a shocking white
Ambulance drawing away from the gate.

She never returned and I never saw
Her buried. So a romance began.
The ivy-mother turned into a tree
That still hops away like a rainbow down
The avenue as I approach.
My tendrils are the ones that clutch.

I made a life for her over the years.
Frustrated no more by a dull marriage
She ran a canteen through several wars.
The wit of a cliché-ridden village
She met her match at an extra-mural
Class and the OU summer school.

Many a hero in his time
And every poet has acquired
A lost woman to haunt the home,
To be compensated and desired,
Who will not alter, who will not grow,
A corpse they need never get to know.

She is nearly always benign. Her habit
Is not to stride at dead of night.
Soft and crepuscular in rabbit-
Light she comes out. Hear how they hate
Themselves for losing her as they did.
Her country is bland and she does not chide.

But my lost woman evermore snaps
From somewhere else: ‘You did not love me.
I sacrificed too much perhaps,
I showed you the way to rise above me
And you took it. You are the ghost
With the bat-voice, my dear. I am not lost.’

The Lost Woman – Patricia Beer


Patricia Beer was born into a Plymouth Brethren family in Exeter and the influence of that religious training became one of the forces that shaped her poetry. Devon and its beautiful countryside were other factors of influence. Other significant influences were the passing of time and the workings of good and evil. Though Patricia Beer moved away from the religious teachings of her childhood, they remained a dominant influence in her life.

Metaphysical Inference

This is an uncomfortable elegy for her mother that reveals unsettling feelings of insecurity and envy. This poem speaks of the tendency people have of idealizing the dead but the poet’s mother speaks in a chiding voice to her daughter. Like other poets have their muse, her muse was her mother but she was only “nearly always benign”. There were times when she was toxic. The last stanza reveals tones of envy in her mother’s voice. She has the last word when she says “I am not lost”. Which implies that the poet is the wandering ghost.


The poet’s mother took ill suddenly and was in pain before being taken away in an ambulance. The poet was in school when most of this happened, coming home just in time to see the ambulance bearing the mother away. The mother dies in hospital. The poet does not get to attend the funeral. In her mind the poet starts weaving a tale where her mother is not the clingy person she was in real life but strong as a tree, and unapproachable as she moves away before the poet can reach out to her.
In the story that the poet weaves of her mother, she leads an interesting life quite unlike the real life she led when alive. It is common for heroes and poets to have a personal muse who inspires them. These muses are benevolent and soft, they tread softly and flit about in soft twilight without startling people. They are given to speak softly and do not nag. But the poet’s mother-muse was very different. She spoke sharply in a complaining voice about not receiving enough love from her daughter for whom she had sacrificed so much. Her parting shot is that it is her daughter who is the lost wandering soul, not her.


The mother’s death came about without much warning. All she had was a bad pain. When the poet returns from school one day, she sees an ambulance pulling away from the gate bearing her mother. She does not return. The poet does not see the burial. In her mind she begins idealizing her mother. Her mother was clingy, but the poet creates a strong and cheerful image of her mother in her mind.
In real life her mother had been the prisoner of a dull and boring marriage but the poet imagines her mother as an individual who had an interesting life managing a canteen while the country was at war. She meets her future partner at the Open University art classes. Most poets have a personal muse who is the image of a perfect women – soft spoken, changeless and always young. These women flit about noiselessly in the twilight. The poets mourn the loss of these women who were dear to them when they were alive. They were perfect in every way.
But the poet’s muse who is her mother is very different. She speaks in a sharp whining voice. She claims to have loved her daughter too well while her daughter exploits her mother’s love to reach success that had been denied to the mother. As a parting shot, the mother brands the daughter a lost ghost while she is not.
The language used is taut and tense. When softness is required the poet achieves it through enjambment and half rhymes.

Overall Impression

Patricia Beer lost her mother to a sudden illness when she was fourteen and this incident made her view death with a strange fascination and fear. What marks this poem is the care with which it is crafted. Beer’s attitude towards death and the ambivalence with which she viewed her late mother makes this poem intense.

Tota and her group prepared this presentation on the poem

Choose a question to write an essay

1. In “The Lost Woman,” the poem connotes the fact that the daughter is really the ‘lost woman,’ although this isn’t distinguished until the end. Do you agree?

2. Comment closely on how this poems deals with the idea of parental and familial love.

Deadline:  March 21

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Poem: Mirror by Sylvia Plath


I am silver and exact. I have no preconceptions.
Whatever I see I swallow immediately
Just as it is, unmisted by love or dislike.
I am not cruel, only truthful ‚
The eye of a little god, four-cornered.
Most of the time I meditate on the opposite wall.
It is pink, with speckles. I have looked at it so long
I think it is part of my heart. But it flickers.
Faces and darkness separate us over and over.

Now I am a lake. A woman bends over me,
Searching my reaches for what she really is.
Then she turns to those liars, the candles or the moon.
I see her back, and reflect it faithfully.
She rewards me with tears and an agitation of hands.
I am important to her. She comes and goes.
Each morning it is her face that replaces the darkness.
In me she has drowned a young girl, and in me an old woman
Rises toward her day after day, like a terrible fish.

Listen to the poem

Let´s think!!

  1. What is the effect of Plath’s choice to write the poem from a mirror’s perspective?
  2. Why do you think Plath switched the perspective from a mirror to a lake?
  3. Would this poem read differently if it had been written by a man? What about if a man was visiting the lake?
  4. How old do you think the woman in the poem is?
  5. Growing older is scary in this poem. When you think of yourself aging, is it scary like that “terrible fish”?


Draw an object.  Write a poem giving your drawing human qualities with personification. Use at least two literary devices and highlight them.  Your poem must be at least eight (8) lines long.  It does not have to rhyme, but each line must be at least five words or more.

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Poetry and Prose 2017

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William Blake, ‘The Clod and the Pebble’

Patricia Beer, ‘The Lost Woman …’

Dilip Chitre, ‘Father Returning Home’

Amanda Chong, ‘lion heart’

John Donne, ‘Lovers’ Infiniteness’

George Herbert, ‘Love (3)’

Sam Hunt, ‘Stabat Mater’

Emma Jones, ‘Tiger in the Menagerie’

John Keats, ‘Last Sonnet’

Liz Lochhead, ‘For My Grandmother Knitting’

Kathleen Raine, ‘Passion’

Owen Sheers, ‘Coming Home’

Edith Sitwell, ‘Heart and Mind’

William Wordsworth, ‘She was a Phantom of Delight’

Lady Mary Wroth, ‘Song’ (Love a child…)

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The following 10 stories:

no. 10 Saki (Hector Hugo Munro), ‘Sredni Vashtar’

no. 17 Sylvia Townsend Warner, ‘The Phoenix’

no. 19 Bernard Malamud, ‘The Prison’

no. 22 J G Ballard, ‘Billennium’

no. 24 Maurice Shadbolt, ‘The People Before’

no. 30 Patricia Highsmith, ‘Ming’s Biggest Prey’

no. 34 Anita Desai, ‘Games at Twilight’

no. 39 Paule Marshall, ‘To Da-duh, in Memoriam’ no.

40 Rohinton Mistry, ‘Of White Hairs and Cricket’

no. 45 Adam Thorpe, ‘Tyres”

-Which poems and stories have we already covered?

-Let`s get to know the other writers pending. Do some research on:

  • a short biography
  • historical and social context
  • writer`s main concerns
  • any interesting fact that you want to add
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Welcome Senior 4

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Hi everyone!!

Here we are again, one more year together!!!

This year, we are starting to pave our way towards AS Language and Literature.

We´ll be reading poems and stories and also, by the end of the year, a play.

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All along this year, we are going to try and cover 5 stories and 10 poems and by the end of the year we are reading the play.

we´ll be writing essays as usual, but we are beginning to write longer and more elaborate pieces of writing!

As you may already know….we have 3 periods a week: 2 periods at school and 1 virtual period.

The virtual period activity is compulsory: sometimes you will be asked to do something in my blog, some others in your blog, or via google drive.

Let´s have a wonderful year together!!

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Welcome Senior 1

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Hello everyone!

Nice to be with you again this year and to share new experiences.

This year, we’ll be working on Literature and we’ll be reading poetry, stories and a drama play.



Resultado de imagen para songs of ourselves     Image result for a view from the bridge

We are starting our path towards IGCSE Literature and we are going to use these 3 books along 3 years. Don´t lose them, and don´t throw away anything we do in class cause you are going to need everything later on.

As regards your blogs, I want to ask you to add subcategories for Literature: poetry, prose, drama and essay writing.

Don´t forget to enable comments so all the teachers can leave comments in your blogs.

All throughout the year we´ll be working, discussing, debating and writing our thoughts.

Let´s start reviewing some literary devices: we learnt some last year and we´ll be learning more and more!

First, we´ll have a look at this presentation and together we´ll think of examples based on novels, poems, stories , plays you have already read.


Link this presentation to your blog and prepare your first post in Literature

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