Learning Curve

NOTICE: Learning Curve has moved.

With the launch of our new website, we've moved Learning Curve.
Visit the new section.

Celebrate National Poetry Month

Post by Debbie Cafazzo / The News Tribune on April 4, 2013 at 11:46 am | No Comments »
April 4, 2013 11:46 am

This is a rare commercial plug, but it’s for a good cause I believe in: Poetry.

Penguin, publisher of all those “classics” you may or may not have read in high school, has a new Apple device app designed to help make the chore of poetry memorization into a game.

Do students still get assigned to memorize poetry any more? If so, Penguin’s free Poems by Heart app, available here, is a simple little game that prompts you word by word, line by line, with recordings of famous poems. You can choose to hear the poems in either a male or female voice.

It’s fun, but be warned: the freebies are limited. It comes with two free poems – “Eternity” by William Blake and the Shakespeare sonnet, “Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day?” Penguin wants you to buy more. Poems are sold in 99-cent bundles on a theme (e.g. Love, with poems by both Robert Browning and Elizabeth Barrett Browning.) You can also shop by poet.

Of course, enterprising students can always find timeless out-of-copyright works (at least in printed form, if not spoken) online for free. But this app does add a bit of entertainment value.

Finally, I was a little disappointed to hear Shakespeare’s ode to lifelong love read without a romantic Brit accent. But one must suffer for art, right?

The News Tribune now uses Facebook commenting on selected blogs. See editor's column for more details. Commenters are expected to abide by terms of service for Facebook as well as commenting rules for thenewstribune.com. Report violators to webmaster@thenewstribune.com.