As Veterans Day approaches, Lt. Col. John McCrae's famous poem "In Flanders Fields" is often read. With poppies given for donations at shopping centers by veterans groups, middle schoolers can be given a keen awareness of "The war to end all wars" as well as learning about the circumstances surrounding the poem. Notes for suggestions appear at the bottom of each slide as you prepare the class for group activities. (It is suggested that copies of the Power Point in 3 slide to a page format be given to each group).
Common Core Standards RL.7.4; RL.7.5; and RL.7.7 are aligned to this lesson. Questions at the end of the presentation will engage students in critical thinking about elements in the poem as well as its meaning. Multiple sources of the poem i.e. audio and musical interpretation add to the levels of understanding. Background to the setting and the author set up the exposure to the poem itself. Further references to other works may be cited as well. Also, salient facts such as the passing away of the last living participant in WWI within the last few months may now be linked to those McCrae was writing about in his poem.
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