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Miniver Cheevy by Edwin Arlington Robinson, Poetry Analysis, American Lit, CCSS

Laura Randazzo
Grade Levels
9th - 12th, Homeschool
Formats Included
  • PDF
3-page PDF
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Laura Randazzo


Use “Miniver Cheevy,” Edwin Arlington Robinson’s famous tale of the man crippled by his love of the past, to teach your students the elements of poetry analysis.

Begin with a reading of the poem from the attractive, modern-designed handout of the public domain work that includes helpful footnotes and space on the page for close reading annotations. After students have completed a close reading of the poem, then hand out copies of the question worksheet, which features eleven short answer depth-of-knowledge questions that will require students to dig back into the text of the poem as well as their own minds to find the answers. Finally, after students have finished answering the questions, launch a full-class discussion of the answers; the detailed answer key included in the lesson materials will not only ease your grading, but also can be used as a helpful discussion-starter.

This lesson will take 45 minutes to complete and can easily be folded into ANY poetry unit or American literature class. The lesson is fully contained and would work as an emergency sub plan, too!

Designed for advanced middle school and high school students.

Want more lessons featuring the masters of American literature? Click HERE to view my full catalog of American literature materials.

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Image credit: Pexels, Public domain

Total Pages
3-page PDF
Answer Key
Teaching Duration
45 minutes
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to see state-specific standards (only available in the US).
By the end of grade 11, read and comprehend literature, including stories, dramas, and poems, in the grades 11-CCR text complexity band proficiently, with scaffolding as needed at the high end of the range.By the end of grade 12, read and comprehend literature, including stories, dramas, and poems, at the high end of the grades 11-CCR text complexity band independently and proficiently.
Demonstrate knowledge of eighteenth-, nineteenth- and early-twentieth-century foundational works of American literature, including how two or more texts from the same period treat similar themes or topics.
Analyze a case in which grasping point of view requires distinguishing what is directly stated in a text from what is really meant (e.g., satire, sarcasm, irony, or understatement).
Analyze how an author’s choices concerning how to structure specific parts of a text (e.g., the choice of where to begin or end a story, the choice to provide a comedic or tragic resolution) contribute to its overall structure and meaning as well as its aesthetic impact.
Analyze the impact of the author’s choices regarding how to develop and relate elements of a story or drama (e.g., where a story is set, how the action is ordered, how the characters are introduced and developed).


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