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Your Dad Did What?

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Izzy Parker

on 18 December 2013

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Transcript of Your Dad Did What?

Subject matter
It is most likely to illustrate a personal experience, but could also be to explain her feelings about the way teachers behave with difficult and tender circumstances.
The poem is about a misunderstanding, so the general tone is quite harsh during most of the poem. (The reason for this perhaps is that the reader has to work out the problem for themselves).

In the last stanza there is a feeling of guilt and realisation - the last line has been written in italics not only to show that this is what the boy has written, but perhaps to emphasise the realisation that the teacher has.
Image by Tom Mooring
Your Dad Did What?
- The poem is split into four stanzas which each have four lines.
- Written in 2nd person - there is a narrator addressing the teacher.

- enjambement is used - this shows that the teacher does not stop to try and figure out the misunderstanding - she just wants to get the work marked.

- the poet uses questions (and repeats these) to show the teacher's growing frustration and confusion
- use of pronouns - "they" - shows that the teacher is detached from the pupils; she is not treat them as individuals and does not really care about their personal lives.

There is a lack of similes and metaphors in the poem; this makes us focus on the feelings of guilt that the teacher has and the actual story.
The rhyming pattern is ABAB - this gives the poem rhythm and also may be reminiscent of children's poems and stories, as they often have this pattern.
Your Dad Did What?
Where they have been, if they have been away,
or what they've done at home, if they have not -
you make them write about the holiday.
One writes My Dad did. What? Your Dad did what?

That's not a sentence. Never mind the bell.
We stay behind until the work is done.
You count their words (you who can count and spell);
all the assignments are complete bar one

and though this boy seems bright, that one is his.
He says he's finished, doesn't want to add
anything, hands it in just as it is.
No change. My Dad did. What? What did his Dad?

You find the 'E' you gave him as you sort
through reams of what this girl did, what that lad did,
and read the line again, just one 'e' short:
This holiday was horrible. My Dad did.
The poem is about a teacher who has set her class the task of writing about what they did in the holidays. One boy makes a spelling mistake, so the teacher does not learn until the end of the poem that his Dad died during the holidays.
Alliteration - "dad did" - makes it sound harsh and bare.
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