How do I structure an analytical paragraph whilst analysing a poem?

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Planning:

Make sure you're planning the paragraph separately first; use bullet points. Start off by identifying which theme you're going to discuss in this paragraph. Underline a few quotes from the poem that contribute to the theme, and analyse them. Once you've picked up on the main points of the theme, the techniques and the effects of the techniques, structure your paragraph according to that.

Writing:

Discuss what the theme is, what the poet chooses to say about it. Once you've identified the theme and discussed the theme, use a full quote (no short fragments), and discuss the quote in detail. Pay attention to how the poet chooses to convey their thoughts. Talk about the literary devices that the poet has used, and what their effects are. How do they manipulate the tone? How do they add to or take away from the central theme? Finish off your paragraph by stating the relation of the effect to the theme.

How it relates to your grades:

In the IB it's always important to remember that the examiners want evidence for every point you make, and it's important to make sure that you explain and develop your evidence fully in order to score the highest marks. Articulation and clarity are highly lauded.

Pratyusha P. IB English Literature tutor, IB History tutor, Uni Admis...

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