Thursday, January 14, 2010

32. Memorize a Poem

I don't know why I put this goal on my list. I think it was one of those moments when I was looking at other people's lists trying to get the last few goals down that I thought it was a good idea. I'm not one for poetry. I understand the use of teaching it to students to help promote creativity and to help them with their writing as a whole, but I'm not much of a fan of it in a leisurely sense. Reading a book of poetry seems pointless. But that's just me.

From this conclusion, I decided to expand my definition of a poem. I figured memorizing a poem would give me little satisfaction and thus would be pointless. So, I thought memorizing the Gettysburg Address would be a little more interesting to me. It isn't a long speech, but as far as speeches go, it is probably the most famous one given in America.

I began trying to memorize this speech a little more than a month ago. I printed out the speech and began trying to learn it line by line. I didn't begin learning big chunks of it until Melissa began quizzing me on it as we were driving down to Ohio for Christmas (talk about taking one for the team! Thanks again Melissa.). After that time I had about 75% of it done and over the past month, I have been wittling away at the last few lines.

I need to again acknowledge my students in my class for their encouragement and interest in my goals. They have been asking me how I have been doing on my goals and have asked me how far along I was with the Gettysburg address. This morning, I projected the speech up on the wall and told them the history about the Gettysburg address. I taught about the Civil War and it's importance on American History. After our discussion I began reciting the address to the class as they all looked intently to see if I had misspoken any of the words. When I finished they all had huge grins. I felt good. They confirmed that I had done it perfectly and could consider the goal done. It's a good sense of accomplishment.

Another goal down!


melissa said...

Yay!!!! I am so excited you finally did it with your class.

Mom said...

What an awesome role model you are, Eric! Your kids will probably remember that longer than anything else you teach them! Once again you are making me soooo proud! I love you!