2 What is Paper 2, Language? Divided into two sections: Section A – Comparison of two poems from different cultures. (45 minutes) 27 marksSection B – Writing to inform, explain, describe. (45 minutes) 27 marksRemember, you should only answer two questions in total (one from each section.)
3 Boosting Grade D - C Grade D skills descriptors: Some extended and supported comment.A range of comment supported by textual detail.Comment on the effects achieved by the writer.Awareness of feelings, attitudes and ideas.The descriptors imply that understanding of the poems is superficial and not developed into a full analysis. Also no attempt is made to compare the poems.
4 Boosting Grade D - C Grade C skills descriptors: Some cross reference. Effective use of textual detail.Awareness of writers’ techniques and purpose.Understanding of feelings, attitudes and ideas.There is immediately a difference because students are required to cross-reference, or compare, the poems to achieve a ‘C’ grade.Also, a ‘C’ grade student will identify the writers’ purpose and now their language achieves an effect.
5 The three key assessment objectives: AO2(i)Read with insight and engagement, making appropriate references to texts and developing and sustaining interpretations of them.Show that you recognise poet / characters POV and show you know what the poem is about – Give a Personal response to the poems.AO2(iv)Select material appropriate to their purpose, collate material from different sources, and make cross references.Ensure you understand the question and give relevant information, compare the two poems and use quotations.AO2(v)Understand and evaluate how writers use linguistic, structural andpresentational devices to achieve their effects, and comment on ways language varies and changes.Give your opinion and explore poetic techniques used by poet. Think about how the poem has been put together and any presentational devices used.
6 A typical ‘D’ grade response. What is the problem with this? Emma’s response Ferlinghetti describes the posh couple in the Mercedes and the dirty binmen in their truck who have to stop at the traffic lights, because the light’s on red. He makes the couple sound elegant and the binmen sound dirty and ugly. The woman is ‘casually coiffed’ and the man is wearing ‘a hip three-piece linen suit.’ The bin men would like to be like the couple, but they know they have no chance. Ferlinghetti is saying that in America some people are rich and some people are still very poor, and it’s not fair. He starts the lines in different places on the page and it sounds jerky when you read it. Tatamkhulu Afrika returns to where he used to live to find that his town has been demolished and there’s a ‘brash’ hotel on the derelict ground. He describes how angry Afrika is when he sees the ‘guard at the gatepost’. (Grade D)
7 What is the difference between Emma’s ‘D’ and this ‘C’ grade? Ferlinghetti compares the ‘elegant’ middle-class couple in their ‘elegant’ Mercedes to the unattractive, tired and dirty bin-men. He describes the bin men on ‘the back stoop’ of their truck at the traffic lights, looking down at the couple ‘as from a great distance.’ This suggests there is a great gap between the lifestyles of the rich and the poor in America. Afrika is also concerned about the difference between the rich and the poor, but in ‘Nothing’s Changed’ the rich are white and the poor people are black South Africans – ‘No sign says it is, but we know where we belong.’ They still feel inferior although apartheid has been abolished. Afrika writes in stanzas of the same length, probably because he wants to keep the shape of the poem the same, since he feels ‘Nothing’s Changed’ in South Africa, even though the signs have been taken down. But he does separate his thoughts from the rest of the fourth stanza. It’s as though he stops telling his story and describing what he can see, to express his bitterness. Ferlinghetti’s lines, on the other hand, are scattered on both sides of the page, to make it look as though there’s a difference between the rich people and the poor bin men. He’s one of the ‘beat poets’ and he wants his poem to sound jerky as though it’s being performed. (Grade C)
8 Use ‘C’ grade words... Similarities: Similarly... Also... In the same way...This compares with...In addition...Furthermore...Moreover...Differences:Conversely...However...In contrast...Although...Whereas...But...On the other hand...On the contrary...If you remember to use these, you will have to gain a ‘C’ grade as you are making a comparison between the two poems!
9 Always use P.E.E in your response. To boost your grade from a D to a C you must show effective use of textual detail.How can you make sure that you do this? You need to use the PEE technique:POINTWhat do you want to say about the poem? This could be connected the themes, content, language, presentation or structure.EVIDENCEUse a ‘quotation’ from the poem to support what you are trying to say.YOU NEED TO DO THIS TO GET A ‘C’ GRADE!EXPLANATIONExplain the effects of this quotation and how it proves the point you have made. What are the possible underlying meanings of your quotation and what is the writer trying to communicate to you?
10 Your turn... Which of the following are using PEE effectively? ‘Sir, laughter is bitter to the burned mouth’ is a short, direct answer. It’s polite, but snappy to show the poet’s anger that innocent people were injured and killed because the Americans dropped napalm bombs on Vietnam.The life of the Vietnamese people before the war is described very emotively. Leverton writes ‘peaceful clouds were reflected in the paddies.’ She uses alliteration here as well.Before the war the Vietnamese people loved their gardens with their ‘lanterns of stone.’ Leverton plays on the word ‘stone’ to describe how ‘their light hearts turned to stone’ when they were numbed by the hard cruelty of war.
11 How do you show that you understand the poets’ feelings, attitudes and ideas, rather than just being aware of them? You have to climb into the poets’ heads – or into the heads of the people portrayed in the poems.
15 Which poems would you choose? ‘Nothing’s Changed’ is a poem about political protest. Compare it with any other poem where the poet is making political comment.Choice 1 _________________________ Choice 2 _________________________‘Two Scavengers in a Truck’ has a strong sense of place. Compare it with another poem where place is important.Compare how description is used in ‘Vultures’ with the use of description in another poem of your choice.The incident in ‘Night of the Scorpion’ is told through the eyes of a child. Compare this poem with any other which uses the first person.The beginning of ‘Blessing’ introduces the poem’s theme. Find another poem that does this and compare how the poets use the beginnings of their poems to present their ideas.
16 Answering the question: making sure you compare Whatever the exam question in this part of the paper, you have to compare two poems. In order to ensure that you compare all the aspects of the poems required by the question, it is a very good idea to refer to both poems within each paragraph of your answer.Use the following timings to help you.
17 Perfect timing... Plan – 10 minutes Highlight the question and plan your answer.Organise your ideas.Use arrows to join similar or contrasting details in the poems.Write – 30 minutesUse eight paragraphs, each paragraph comparing both poems:1 Short introduction – use words from the question.2 What are the poems about? Compare their themes.3 Why? Compare the poets’ feelings/attitudes/ideas.4 Why? Compare the poets’ purposes.5 How?6 How?7 How?8 How do I feel? Explain which poem you prefer and say why.Check – 5 minutesHave you written what you think you’ve written? Try to see it from the examiner’s point of view. Check your spelling and punctuation.
18 Don’t forget to revise...You will need to revise the following to be successful in Section A of this exam:Read and re-read the poems.Do you know all of the poetic techniques used?What are the themes of each poem?Can you identify the poet’s purpose or thoughts in each?What are your personal ideas?Do you know the comparative connectives?If you spend some time on this at home, you will find it much easier when you sit your exam. Good Luck!
19 Section B – inform, explain or describe? You will be assessed for your ability to:AO3(i)Communicate clearly and imaginatively, using and adapting forms for different readers and purposes.AO3(ii)Organise ideas into sentences, paragraphs and whole texts using a variety of linguistic and structural features.Before you begin an essay, be sure you know what its purpose, audience and format are. Make the content (what you say) and style (how you say it) fit in with these.
20 Section B – inform, explain or describe? To inform – telling the reader about something or someone. This involves putting information across clearly.To explain – giving the answers to the questions ‘how?’ and ‘why?’ about something. This helps the reader to understand an idea, a point of view or a situation.To describe – painting a picture with words. This means putting across in an imaginative way what something or someone is like.
21 Identify the audience, purpose and format. You are organising your school Prom. Write a leaflet informing Year 11 about the arrangements.There are many pressures on teenagers today. Explain what you think the main pressures are and how they affect your life and the lives of teenagers you know.Think about your favourite place. Describe it so that someone who has never seen it can see why it is so important to you.
22 Section B – inform, explain or describe? Whatever type of exam essay you choose, remember three words (OCC):Organise – plan your work and organise it.Communicate – put across your ideas clearly.Check that your work is accurate.Students who remember to plan and check their work have been know to get a whole grade higher than others!
23 Planning can be done in several different ways: A diagram, such as a spidergram or mind map:A line of linked ideas:Cakes - why don’t people make them? - what are the problems? - how to make a cake - simple rules for cake making - the importance of cakes/why we like them - different types.A paragraph plan:Paragraph 1: Cakes – why don’t people make them? What are the problems?Paragraph 2: Simple rules for cake making.Paragraph 3: Cakes are important to us because …Paragraph 4: Different types of cakes for different occasions.Hint: Use the 5 Ws and H:Who, What, Where, When, Why and How.
24 Literacy to improve your grade. You need to use a full range of punctuation:Full stops, capital letters, commas and apostrophes.Colons and semi-colons.Speech marks.Exclamation marks.However, they are useless if you don’t know how to use them!
25 Semi-colons – your best friend in writing! They can help improve your sentences significantly and ensure that you gain at least a ‘C’ grade in your writing.Two simple rules for using a semi-colon:When writing complicated lists.2. To separate closely related independent clauses (sentences.)
26 For example...In the meeting today we have Professor Wilson, University of Barnsley; Dr Watson, University of Barrow in Furness; Colonel Custard, Metropolitan Police and Dr Mable Syrup, Genius General, University of Otago, New Zealand.In the meeting today we have Professor Wilson, University of Barnsley, Dr Watson, University of Barrow in Furness, Colonel Custard, Metropolitan Police and Dr Mable Syrup, Genius General, University of Otago, New Zealand.
27 Or... Terry always slept with the light on; He was afraid of the dark. If you are going to use a semicolon to connect two clauses, it is very important that the two clauses are both independent. That means that each clause has to be able to stand alone and make complete sense without the other. If either one cannot stand alone, a semi-colon cannot be used.Now it is your turn – use the worksheet provided to see if you can add semi-colons correctly.