Coromandel Fishers

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Introduction

The ability to appreciate one's own mother tongue can help in building appreciation for another language. More than often mother tongue is seen as an intruder in the classroom. It is not. Reading and writing are transferable skills. Developing these two skills in one language can help the acquisition of another language.


Similarly mother tongue within the classroom can act as a facilitator in learning a second language, in this case English. Use of mother tongue could be an effective method of helping students make sense of foreign texts. It does not mean that each word in the text is translated for the student. Through the judicious use of mother tongue a familiar text can be introduced in the classroom (from another known language) and it can be used to set a context for learning.


The poem Coromandel Fishers written by Sarojini Naidu is a call to fishermen to rise and go into the sea. The poem has a clarion call (a strong and clear call for people to do something) in it.

Concept Map

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Coromandel Fishers

Rise, brothers, rise; the wakening skies pray to the


morning light,


The wind lies asleep in the arms of the dawn, like a


child that has cried all night.


Come, let us gather our nets from the shore and set


our catamarans free,


To capture the leaping wealth of the tide, for we are


the sons of the sea.


No longer delay, let us hasten away in the track of


the sea gull’s call;


The sea is our mother, the cloud is our brother, the


waves are our comrades all.


What though we toss at the fall of the sun where the


hand of the sea-god drives?


He who holds the storm by the hair, will hide in his


breast our lives.


Sweet is the shade of the coconut glade, and the


scent of the mango grove,


And sweet are the sands at the full o’ the moon with the


sound of the voices we love;


But sweeter, O brothers, the kiss of the spray and the dance


of the wild foam’s glee.


Row, brothers, row to the edge of the verge, where the


low sky mates with the sea.



Coromandel Coast


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Ways of transacting

Meaning making

The poem Coromandel Fishers involves imagery and it would be exciting to show children pictures of scenes that the poet has mentioned in the poem. This would especially be interesting for students who come from non-coastal region and have a vague idea of what the sea might look like. Some examples of pictures which can elucidate the meaning of the poem are given below:



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Rise, brothers, rise; the wakening skies pray to the


morning light..


Coromandel Fishers lesson plan html 428f9aaf.jpg









Come, let us gather our nets from the shore and set


our catamarans free..


Coromandel Fishers lesson plan html m176a3cd0.jpg










Figures of speech

Personification – When the qualities of a person is assigned to something non-human.


The wind lies asleep in the arms of the dawn, like a child that has cried all night.


In the line above, dawn has been personified as a mother. So the line above is a personification, metaphor, an image and a simile.


Assessment

  1. Ask students to translate the poem into Kannada in whatever way they can, whichever line they are comfortable with.
  2. Ask them to draw the word pictures that the poem creates.
  3. Ask them to find out if there is any poem in Kannada that can be compared with this poem.
  4. Give the poem in prose form and ask them to rewrite it in the form of a poem and then compare it with the original poem.
  5. Ask groups to enact this poem.


Additional resources

Some web links have dramatic representation of this poem. It can be accessed from: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J-33s357inY


A picture story involves a running stream of pictures along with text which is read out aloud. An example from the web of a picture story of Coromandel Fishers is: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JqM7nBkDeXk