As my short-lived career as an ESL teacher meanders to a close, I taught a hilarious class today where we made diamante poems about cause and effect. You take a simple cause and effect sentence, like this one I found online: I studied hard for my spelling test and got 100! and you transform this into a poem that looks like:
Repeating, Memorizing, Writing
Practice, Analysis, Success, Victory
Cheering, Smiling, Celebrating
It looks like a diamond! How cute. But I’m not big on sappy spelling test B/S. So the next sample I showed my class, I wrote. My sentence? Zombies took over the city and everyone died.
Shambling, Moaning, Eating
They overtake us all
Killing, Biting, Changing
And now, a couple diamante poems written by Korean high school lads. They were really pretty brilliant.
The reason for his madness is so much laughing.
Laughing, Loudening, Stamping
He laugh so much
Teasing, Doing, Exhausting
The destroy revealed because education (I don’t know what this means, but damn is it profound!)
Studying, Learning, Sitting
People have to study hard so they become upset
Rebelling, Restricting, Objecting
I stayed up late at night yesterday, so I am really tired now. (This pretty much could have been my poem.)
Rolling, Standing, Talking
I could not sleep
Sleeping, Trying, Sleeping
This one was unsettling in its conformist nature: A boy studied hard, and he entered a good university,
Memorizing, Solving, Thinking
He studied very hard
Enduring, Desiring, Wishing
This one didn’t have a cause and effect sentence, but it sums up my entire high school experience where a certain subject is concerned. (He waffled on the format, sure, but the theme is so dear to my heart…)
Getting more difficult, Frustrating, Devastating
He doesn’t study math
Scolding, Getting bad grade, Sighing
And now my two favorites, from the best English speaker in the class, and also the most whiney. The first one, as he read it, he told us he wanted the cause and effect sentence to come AFTER he read the poem.
Laughing, Mocking, Annoying
He buried the boy
Panicking, Horrifying, Frightening
A boy teased a boy and he buried the boy.
And my favorite, from the same chap: Too much English made the boy crazy and he became happy.
Too much, Stressed
Over-whelming, Over shooting, Inferior
English made him crazy
Laughing, Dripping, Running
Gosh, I don’t know why these were all so morbid…I’ll leave you with the poem I did in class (everyone had to write two and share one)
Aliens coming to Earth to enslave us will make the human race go extinct.
Descending, Meeting, Talking
Oh no they’re evil!
Maiming, Killing, Enslaving