[Memorisation Kit] An example using Chinese poem

According to Harvard Business Review, these are the benefits of poetry for professionals:

1. Systems thinking: simplify complex topics to better communicate it to others
2. Develop empathy
3. Develop creativity
4. Infuse life with beauty and meaning

“The precision of poetry teaches greater sensitivity to language, which frequent readers of poetry carry into their own writing and speaking.” (Brittany Howard, M.A. in English)

Vee was revising Chinese work this evening. Often, I have to re-teach him because the school teacher may not have explained deeply or he didn’t get it during class. Then came along Li Bai’s classical Chinese poem…

《望天门山》(唐 ∙ 李白)
————————-
天门中断楚江开
碧水东流至此回
两岸青山相对出
孤帆一片日边来

It was my first time reading this poem, so how? This was how I guided him:

1. Read the poem

2. Highlight alternate lines with the memorisation set highlighters

3. Watch a Youtube video clip explaining the poem. An example is as follow:

4. Write down the meaning of special words / phrases

5. Discuss the poem together. Visualise the storyline.

6. Read and memorise the poem

7. (Active recall) Use the green filter plastic to cover the poem. Recite the alternate blacked-out lines. (Control of error) Check answer.

8. Use the red filter plastic to cover the poem. Recite the other alternate blacked-out lines. Check answer.

9. Recite the entire poem. Check. Repeat as needed.

Vee was very pleased to understand the poem and recite it successfully within a short period of time. Reciting a short poem is much easier than a long essay, and he got to appreciate how the poet could express himself with such precise choice of words.

Through such sessions, he also observes how I pick up new knowledge independently, without a tutor.

During his gratitude exercise, he mentioned being grateful for revising with me. I’m grateful for having the opportunity to learn with and guide him towards independent learning.

Happy teaching!

~ MieVee

P.S. To know more about the memorisation set, please refer to the previous post here.

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