If you need a FUN way to teach Walt Whitman's "Song of Myself" look no further! This is seriously one of my favorite things I have ever done in my ten years of teaching. Read about this project on my blog in this post titled, "Song of Myself" Video Project Reveals Walt Whitman's Importance Today."
In short, this assignment was inspired by journalist and filmmaker Jennifer Crandall's ground-breaking documentary called Whitman, Alabama. In this award-winning documentary, Crandall invites Alabamans to read a verse from "Song of Myself" as she and her crew do the filming.
The videos are spontaneous, sincere, and captivating!
So.... this assignment asks students to do the same: have a friend, family member or someone else you know (coach, boss, school principal) read their choice of verse from the poem.
Students shared their videos with me, wrote a brief summary or interpretation of the poems, and then we discussed and analyzed them during class. It was so much fun! Such an awesome way to end our study of America's national poet, Walt Whitman.
I know you'll enjoy this activity! Try it and let me know how it goes!