reader response ideas

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The purpose of this activity is to share ideas and evidence about the different points of view possible for a Reader-Response analysis based on Billy Collins’ poem “The Lanyard.”


  1. Read, listen to, and enjoy a reading of the Billy Collins poem:
  2. Consider the characters in this poem:
    • Who is the speaker?
    • What are his beliefs about the gift or gifts that he gives his mother?
    • What other characters are referred to within the poem’s narrative?
    • Do their attitudes differ from the speaker? If so, what aspects of the poem make you think so?
  3. Write a paragraph explaining at least one of the ideas in the poem concerning the son’s gift or gifts to his mother and justify it based on your own experience and the evidence in the poem.
    1. In your search for evidence, consider and include symbols in the poem; for example:
      • Why a “Lanyard?”
      • What about the letter “L?”
      • What about the colors of the lanyard, the repetitive actions needed to make it, how it is used?
      • What other symbols do you see in each of the stanzas?
      • How do these symbols support (or contrast with) your idea about the poem?
    2. Begin your paragraph with a clear main idea sentence (topic sentence), and when using lines from the poem as evidence, be sure to use MLA 8 format for citing poetry in-text.
  4. Post your paragraph


The purpose of this activity is to write a Reader-Response analysis on “The Lanyard” using the strength of your own experience and the evidence in the poem that supports it.


  1. Write a 400 word Reader-Response analysis of “The Lanyard.”
  2. Include a thesis which states the perspective you support and another perspective that you think has merit but may not be your position. Keep in mind the two different Reader-Responses to “My Papa’s Waltz.”
  3. Create at least three paragraphs in this analysis including:
    • An introduction
    • A body with evidence that includes your “reader response” connection to a character’s point of view and the symbolism that this poem contains, and
    • A Reader-Response that may be different
    • A conclusion
  4. Provide strong evidence including quotations from the poem and explain the connection of the evidence to your thesis.
  5. Transition between evidence for a clear presentation: First, in addition, on the other hand, etc.
  6. Use the Reader-Response essay on “My Papa’s Waltz” as a model for explaining both perspectives. (This is not a narrative point of view statement, but rather an analysis of a perspective that you as a reader find compelling) with evidence of support for your thesis).
  7. Use correct mechanics, MLA format for citing the lines of poetry, and a Works Cited page.
  8. Post your analysis

So there’re 2 different parts

Please submit into 2 separated file words

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