Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard Imagery Activity

  • 8 pages
  • Subject: Imagery, Literary Devices, Tone, Lesson Plans and Educational Resources
  • Common Core Standards: RL.11-12.1, RL.11-12.4, RL.11-12.5, RL.9-10.1, RL.9-10.4

Additional Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard Resources

Product Description

Painstakingly composed over the course of twenty years, Thomas Gray’s 1751 poem “Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard” is widely considered one of the masterpieces of English verse. As Gray’s speaker strolls through the countryside, he reflects on the simple lives of the rural people who live there. Arriving at a graveyard, he reflects on the humble, unknown dead and wonders how many had the potential to achieve greatness. Finally, the speaker turns his thoughts on his own life and coming death, and he writes the epitaph he would carve upon his own tomb. Rich and concise in its language, varied and vivid in its imagery, Gray’s “Elegy” is a mortal meditation for the ages.

Skills: analysis, drawing inferences from text, close reading, identifying the relationship between words

About This Document

The Owl Eyes Imagery activity gives students an opportunity to practice identifying and analyzing imagery. Imagery within a text creates a sensory experience that can connect readers to a text’s setting, atmosphere, or overall aesthetic. Studying imagery will help students understand how narrators or principal characters feel. The main components of this worksheet include the following:

  • A brief introduction to the text
  • A handout on types of imagery with examples from classic texts
  • A step-by-step guide to activity procedure
  • Selected examples of imagery from the text

In completing this worksheet, students will learn to identify and analyze different kinds of imagery in order to develop close reading skills and identify the effect imagery has on their reading experience.