Sunday 14 February 2021

Poesía - an anthology of Spanish poems for beginner learners


Over the last couple of weeks I have been writing poems in Spanish to accompany my scheme of work for primary Spanish.  I have already used some of them in my video lessons, and am encouraging the children to make videos of them for the Express Yourself in Lockdown challenge.  Unfortunately I think the snow that we've had here in the north-east for the last week has proved more appealing than Spanish!

The 25 poems that I've written are now available under the title of Poesía.  You'll get a pdf e-book of the poems, with each one available in both full colour and a mainly black and white, more printer-friendly, version.  Each poem is accompanied by a vocabulary card to aid comprehension.  The introduction gives you some information about why you should use poetry in your lessons, and some ideas for doing so.  And as if that wasn't enough, you'll also get .png image files of all the poems so that you can put them easily into your PowerPoints or Smartboard presentations.  The poems were written with Key Stage 2 learners in mind, but would also suit Secondary learners.

While writing the poems, particularly those with strict structures like haiku, I found invaluable the Separar en sílabas website.  You type in your Spanish, and it gives you a breakdown of the syllables from a grammatical point of view and also the number of syllables those words would have as a line of poetry.  For example, did you know that the question ¿cuántas sílabas? has 5 syllables "normally", but as a line of poetry it only has 4?  Because sílabas is "esdrújula" (has the stress on the 3rd to last syllable), the line of poetry counts as having one syllable fewer.  Similarly, quiero comer has 4 syllables grammatically, but 5 as a line of poetry.  If a line ends in a word whose stress is on the final syllable (like comer) then the line counts as having one syllable more.  Writing haiku and cinquains has been a bit like a jigsaw puzzle!  If you're interested in counting syllables in poetry in French, I've been having a play with the Scribblab tool.

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