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`a dream Within a Dream’ by Edgar Allan Poe Being taught within the unit Mysterious Worlds

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`A Dream Within a Dream’ by Edgar Allan Poe

Being taught within the unit Mysterious Worlds

Clinical Student: Shikha Sharma

Cooperating Teacher: Mrs. Allen

Site: 6th grade Language Arts classroom at Oriole Park Elementary

Duration: One 50-minute class period

Concepts I want to highlight: Tone of the speaker; Metaphor of sand; Rhyme; Theme: transience in the world.

Goals for the lesson: To inspire and engage; to illustrate; to facilitate interpretation and connection with self.

Materials: Textbook Prentice Hall Series, Copper Level; Handout 1, Build Grammar Skills: Complete Sentences (Prentice Hall)

Steps in the Unfolding of the Lesson:

  1. Write the title on the board.

  2. Ask the students what the word “dream” means to them. Write the two sentences on the board: `Last night I had the scariest dream’ AND `It was always my dream to become a world-famous performer.’

  3. Introduce Poe briefly and ask students to first silently read the poem underlining the words and lines that stand out for them and putting a question mark over whatever they don’t understand.

  4. Ask students to share what they highlighted, raising their hands one at a time. Have them read the part out loud. Discuss the part with student, whole class, asking questions, using reciprocal teaching.

  5. Once half of the elements above have been covered, read the poem. If questions below have not been covered, ask them.

Key Literary Elements: Metaphor, Tone, Theme, Rhyme.

Critical Thinking Questions: What images do you see as you read this poem? How many people do you see? What setting do you see? What is the speaker doing? How is the speaker feeling?

  1. Tell the class that we’ll soon watch a performance where the artist also uses sand as a metaphor and as the medium. Afterwards, I’ll ask you to write a paragraph about what you saw and what you thought the performance was trying to say/ what story was the artist telling, and how it made you feel. But before that we’ll do a short exercise on Complete and Incomplete Sentences (Prentice Hall). Pass the sheet around. Go over it. In-class activity.

  2. As the students are doing the activity, set up the performance on the computer and the projector. Kseniya Simonova's Amazing Sand Drawing

  3. Ask students to hold on to their sheets, pausing their writing in case not finished, and get ready to watch a visual/ dramatic performance by a Ukrainian artist who also uses sand as the metaphor and also as the medium. Once the performance is over they will do a quick-write on the story the artist was telling.

  4. Q & A regarding Complete and Incomplete Sentences (Prentice Hall).

  5. Closure: Write the word on the board: TRANSIENCE. Ask students to guess what it means. Write common root words on the board. TRANSPORT, TRANSFER, TRANSISTOR, TRANS-NATIONAL FLIGHT, TRANCE. Ask how this word/ concept is relevant in the context of the works we have encountered/ how does it apply to TIME.

Name Room No. Date

Edgar Allan Poe’s “A Dream Within a Dream’


Kseniya Simonova’s Amazing Sand Drawing

  1. What stories were the artists telling?

  2. What was the tone of the speaker/ artist in each of the works?

  3. What was the main theme of each of the works?

Write three paragraphs about the above. Feel free to draw or give examples from music or whatever touches you and communicates similar ideas to you in life (big bonus points).

Rubric for Assignment on Poe & Simonova
I. Addresses all three questions 3 2 1

II. Talks in terms of literary elements: theme, metaphor, tone 3 2 1

III. Grammatical errors, less than 5, 5-10, more than 10. 3 2 1

IV. Bonus Points for using supplementary examples/ illustration of ideas. 3

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