Mabroka  M Milad  El_shukri Mabroka M Milad El_shukri

Sailing to Byzantium
Advanced level


In this lesson Sts are presented with a poem, they will start discussing the title, read the poems individually, discuss it in groups, make interpretation and do a speaking task as a post reading. Ss will be given a chance to talk about the poem, first with a partner and then in small groups, perhaps coming together as a class at the end to share ideas. I monitor and feed in ideas and vocabulary if necessary, give brief feedback on language used and note any language problems to be dealt with at a later date


Abc HO
Abc Internet connection
Abc computers
Abc Markers

Main Aims

  • To provide fluency speaking practice in a conversation, discussion, debates in the context of Poem titled sailing to Byzantium
  • To provide scan reading practice using a text about a poem titled sailing to Byzantium in the context of poem

Subsidiary Aims

  • To provide clarification of some lexical items such as perne in a gyre/Consume /fastened/artifice/ Grecian/ goldsmiths /enamelling/hammered /drowsy / bough in the context of poem
  • To develop Ss interpretative ability


Warmer/Lead-in (3-5 minutes) • To set lesson context and engage students

T welcomes Ss. T writes the first line of the poem on the board and tries to elicit the source. (That is no country for old men) (Poem/ a story ....) T asks Ss what do you think this line refers to? T allow Ss to discuss this question in pairs. T elicits answers and ask for reasons. T tells Ss that this is the first line of a poem titled Sailing to Byzantium written by William Butler Yeat, he was born on June 13, 1865, in Dublin, Ireland, the oldest child of John Butler Yeats and Susan. Although John trained as a lawyer, he abandoned the law for art Yeats spent much of his early years in London, where his father was studying art, but frequently returned to Ireland as well.

Fisrt Exposure of Tl (8-10 minutes) • To set lesson context and engage students

T elicits what is Byzantium? Ss Byzantium (/bɪˈzæntiəm/;) was an ancient Greek colony later became Constantinople, and later still Istanbul.) Ss tries to elicits more info about Byzantium and its history. T allows Ss to search about Byzantium online if needed. T tells Ss, about the pronoun ''that' ? what does it refer to ? ( a country) what country? Byzantium? Can it be the place where the speaker is now ? T tries to motivate Ss to think and arise their interest in reading the whole poem. T opens a quick open class discussion.

While-Reading #1 (speaking activity) (10-15 minutes) • To provide students with less challenging gist and specific information reading tasks

T writes the word Stanza and elicits its meaning( Is a grouped set of lines within a poem, usually set off from other stanzas by a blank line or indentation) T tells Ss that the poem we will read/talk about has 4 stanzas. and each group will have only one stanza. T gives Ss papers (16 pieces/each four with a colour) coloured (Red/blue /whites/green) T asks those who get the same colour form a group. 4 groups should be formed (reds/blues/greens/whites) T asks Ss to keep their coloured papers. T gives instructions. T tells Ss. Each group has one stanza, only the first line is in the right order. Work on your own and put the rest of the lines in the right order then work with your group and check your answers. T distributes the HOs in order; group reds/ stanza 1.....etc T sits time limit and makes sure that Ss are aware of that. T helps Ss with the first line. Ss work T monitors and help Ss when if necessarily. Ss finish and check. T provides Ss with answer keys.

While-Reading #2 (13-17 minutes) • To provide students with more challenging detailed reading task

T tells Ss that they have to read their stanzas again look at the underlined words and try to get the meaning from the context . Ss are reminded that they will have to explain the words to the other groups. Ss are allowed to use dictionaries or go on line. Ss are reminded of the time limit. Ss work T monitors. T provides Ss with answer keys. (words and definitions) T asks CCQs to make sure that Ss got the meaning right. T drills the words. Ss repeat.

While-Reading #3 (20-25 minutes) • To provide with an opportunity to respond to the text and expand on what they've learned.

T regroups Ss. Each group will have four colours according to the paper given in the previous stages (red+blue+green+white) T makes sure that all members of the new groups have different colour, so that each group will have four stanzas. T gives Ss new HOs with the full poem, so that they pay more attention to the whole theme of the poem. T asks Ss to listen and read the poem. T asks Ss to work together and each member explains their stanzas to the whole group. T tells Ss that they may/may not agree with their friends interpretations. T asks Ss to decide the main theme of the poem and discuses some questions, such as what is the speaker actually saying? who is the speaker? where is he now ? where is he going? All students will be working together to get the meaning of the whole poem. Meanwhile, T will use the OHP to present the poem on the board for later stages. The 4 groups will be doing the same thing at the same time. Ss work and T monitors.

Post reading #1 / extended speaking activity (30-60 minutes) • To provide with an opportunity to respond to the text and expand on what they've learned

by this time Ss will have read the whole poem, discussed it and explained their stanzas to their friends. T displays the questions/poem on the board using the OHP. T will give Ss numbers 1/8 and letter A/I Sts 1 will set with Sts A ....etc Ss will be sitting in two lines. T will tell Ss that they willl be working with their partner for only short time. Everyone should try to answer as many questions as possible with having to write anything down? Only discussion. Both the questions and the poem will be displayed on the board. After they hear a clap only those with letters should move and set in the next chair with should be empty be then. (numbers don't move) T gives Ss time to read the questions and decide which ones they need to ask their friends about? T tells SS that they don't have to agree with their friend. Ss work and try discuss the questions together based on their understanding of the poem from the previous stages. Questions will be organised, each stanza will have certain questions. Ss work T moniter and claps to Ss TO change their place. T monitors, helps and collect errors for the delayed feedback stage. Possible questions/see below Stanza No1 Who is the speaker? what kind of picture is the speaker describing? why does he want to leave? what is he saying about young people? what is he telling us about nature and natural life? birds, fish so on (they will eventually die) what does flesh refer to? (humankind) What does music symbolise?(life) (Things live and then they die) what do line 4/5/6 tell us? What distinguishes people from animals? in this stanza (probably nothing) what is the speaker saying in line 7/8 young ppl are so caught up in all that "begetting" and living and dying that they completely forget to think about things that might outlast their own brief lives. Is there any kind of comparison? (He compares music to "monuments." Music sounds really great…for about three minutes. Maybe even five. Sculptures, however, are around for a long time. Stanza 2 what is he saying about old men? what did he use to describe old me?(tattred coat upon a stick) what is the function of unless? (the only substitute for old ppl is to have their soul educated to clap thier hands what does 'there' refer to in line 13? and is the function of therefore in line 15? as the poet does not find the right school to educate his soul, he travels across the seas and reaches the holy city of Byzantium. stanza 3 where is the speaker now? has he arrived to Byzantium? what is happening in line 1/2 They happen to be sages, wise and holy folk. They also happen to be standing in a fire. Is the speaker still talking nature and body (that cycle of living and dying) a shift to spirituality and art Is there a comparison (sages as gold mosaic) Why mosaic wall ? mosaics create a beautiful picture out of lots of small parts – sort of like the way that a good society is created by the collaboration of lots of individual people /The sages aren’t the end-all and be-all of Byzantium. They’re just a small (and beautiful) part of a pretty awesome whole. stanza 4 what do line 25/26 tell us? the best way to preserve part of yourself is to lodge that part in "unnatural" things like art what part of art does the speaker want to?He’ want to be hammered gold and "gold enamelling." Does he have another option instead of wanting to be hammered gold?a bird. Unlike the birds of nature. to whom is he going to sing? The "lords and ladies of Byzantium" will turn to the golden bird as a touchstone, something that allows them to connect the past, present, and future. Because art lasts for all time, it can be relevant to all ages. That is immortality.

If time allows / general discussion and feedback) • to round up the lesson in an effective manner.

Does Byzantium sound like a place where you’d want to spend any time? Is Byzantium an actual place in the poem, or is it a mental state? What reasons do you have for your opinion? What does our speaker think of nature? Is it a good thing? A bad and scary thing? Why? What’s so great about art, anyway? What function does it serve for the speaker of the poem?

Homework • To provide with an opportunity to respond to the text and expand on what they've learned

Ss are asked to try to work on these questions? Ss are reminded that there is no just one correct answer. Ss are given a week for the Homework. Ss are encouraged to answered as many question as possible. They don't have to answer them all. Is the speaker of this poem actively seeking his own type of transformation? If so, why does he ask the sages to do all the work of consuming his heart? Does this matter? What role does gold play in the speaker’s imagined rebirth? Does the speaker actually want to be reborn as an art object, or is this a metaphorical rebirth? What brings you to this conclusion? Why is the sort of transformation which occurs in the natural world such a bad thing? Is the speaker of the poem an old man? How can you tell? If he’s not, how does this change your reading? Which does the poem value more: youth or agelessness? How can you relate this to the poem? Does age matter in Byzantium? If so, how? How does this poem define old age? Questions About Old Age Is the speaker of the poem an old man? How can you tell? If he’s not, how does this change your reading? Which does the poem value more: youth or agelessness? What textual evidence allows you to draw your conclusion? Does age matter in Byzantium? If so, how? How does this poem define old age? Is Byzantium part of the natural world? What is the relationship between art and nature in this poem? Is the speaker of this poem seeking spiritual or physical transformation? Are the two the same thing? Why or why not? At the end of the poem, the speaker imagines being viewed by the Emperor. Is he really looking for spiritual change, or is he just imagining a better social standing? How would you describe the "soul" of a piece of artwork? What’s so awful about living in the moment?

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