[Milton-L] Memorized recitations

Paul Munn munnpaul at hotmail.com
Sat Feb 21 13:15:58 EST 2004

In my Milton class, a memorized sonnet performance of Milton (or 14 lines or 
so coherent lines of Paradise Lost) can partially compensate for a missed or 
poor quiz.

In my general education poetry class, for freshman and sophomores, almost 
all not English majors, I require a memorized performance of a sonnet.  The 
performance is late in the term, after I have performed quite a bit myself 
and some students too (to make up for a quiz), and after all students have 
been in front of the class as part of a group presentation.

The exercise is a great success.  (I first thought the requirement would be 
beyond the ability of some students, but only 1 out of 160 has declined to 
do it.)  In fact, some performances bring down the house, and some weaker 
readers and writers do well in performance.

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