This activity has students complete a close reading of Beowulf's speech to Hrothgar in which Beowulf beckons the king for permission to slay the mighty monster Grendel. Students then make observations about the effect and impact of Beowulf's rhetoric to share with the class. This is an excellent activity for collaborative groups followed by whole class discussion. Consider assigning each group a specific rhetorical device to look for and present to the class instead of looking for all of them at once. You can easily adapt this activity according to the level of your students as needed.
An extension of this close reading/discussion activity would be to assign an essay analyzing the rhetoric and style of Beowulf's speech. This is the perfect writing task to practice for the new essay requirements on the national ELA exam, which will require such analysis.
This activity is included in my MEGA BEOWULF BUNDLE with 25 lessons and activities! You can find the ENTIRE bundle here: