This bundle for Samuel Taylor Coleridge's poem "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner" contains materials that will help you introduce the text, support students' reading, and provide cumulative assignments.
The background PowerPoint includes:
- Explanation of the phrase "an albatross around your neck" (which originates from the poem) and examples of it appearing in pop culture
- Plot overview
- The historical context of the poem
The reading questions include:
- 30 plot questions
- A graphic organizer that helps students analyze how the poem meets the ideals of British Romanticism
- An answer key
There are three cumulative activities included (descriptions follow). Choose the assignment depending on the level of the class and your timeframe.
Headline ordering assignment:
-Students put the "headlines" about the poem in the correct order to help them recall the events and understand how the story progresses.
-Three deeper analysis questions are included.
-Answer key is included.
"Lenses of the Rime of the Ancient Mariner" assignment:
-Students work in groups to analyze the poem as an adventure story, horror story, and spiritual parable.
-Three worksheets (with answer keys) included.
(I have two groups for each lens and had them share and compare their ideas with the whole class.)
Literary Merit assignment: Some people love the poem's intense imagery and supernatural elements, while others argue that the poem lacks substance. This assignment requires students to analyze the literary merit of "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner." The assignment includes:
- A prompt for students to first brainstorm their own list of criteria for "literary merit."
- A three-page packet for students to analyze how well the poem meets some common criteria for literary merit (and they can substitute their own criteria if desired).
- William Wordsworth's criticism of the poem, to use in a wrap-up discussion.