• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

In Mrs. Tilschers Class by Carol Ann Duffy is a poem in which she explores the themes of childhood and the transition to adulthood.

Extracts from this document...


In Mrs Tilscher?s Class ?In Mrs. Tilscher?s Class? by Carol Ann Duffy is a poem from her collection, ?The Other Country?, in which she explores the themes of childhood and the transition to adulthood. The poem is a autobiographical monologue published in 1990. It is based however on her childhood during about 1967. The language she uses is particularly striking in conveying the process of maturing to the turmoil of adulthood. The poem is structured into 4 stanzas with the first two being octets and the last two being septets. There is no rhyme scheme. Overall, the structure is unconventional and haphazard which could be suggestive of the changes and chaos that occur in the change from childhood to adulthood. Duffy uses the second person all throughout the poem, which signifies the universality of the theme and opens up to responses from readers. It also insinuates that Duffy is now a different person than she was when she was a child- she is writing from a different perspective about past events. She also uses a lot of evocative imagery and personification to draw comparisons to natural elements. For example, she describes the ?inky tadpoles? which are symbols of the innocent children and later depicts the ?croaking? frogs, all grown up. ...read more.


There is a sense of structure and time in the actions: ?That for an hour, then, a skittle of milk? shows that there is a predictable, rhythmic plan in their lives when they are children. The second stanza primarily explores Duffy?s love for school and its impact on her being. The strongly positive words like ?enthralling? and ?glowed?, the childlike comparisons to sweetshops and sugar paper and the caesuras that compound those ideas as definitive opinions on school. It shows her unflinching love for her childhood life. The juvenile metaphors and similes show her innocence. This is contrasted with the horror of ?Brady and Hindley?, the child assaulters and murderers in the. Again, the suspense created by the caesura leads to a let down where she claims that the murderers ?faded?. That phrase shows the sense of security and safety school provides. Then there is the statement that ?Mrs Tilscher loved you?. This directly shows the love and happiness she received in school. It creates a sense of seemingly endless joy. The transferred epithet in ?good gold star? furthers the notion of contentment. The last line of the second stanza, ?a xylophone?s nonsense..? introduces a new concept- growing up. The children consider their old toys as ?nonsense? which shows the beginning of their maturation. ...read more.


The last line hence gives Duffy?s final stance on the difference between childhood and adulthood. The tone of the poem is one of nostalgia. The positive light she holds her childhood in is evinced through the use of the words ?enthralling?, ?loved? and ?good?. The mood evoked is remembrance because of the ubiquity of pining for childhood. The tone becomes progressively troubled as the poem progresses. ?Brady and Hindley? initially evoke fear. Then words like ?electricity? and ?storm? exacerbate this apprehension. The mood towards the end of the poem is perhaps wistful or melancholy. Quotes: 1. ?You could travel along the Blue Nile? 2. ?Tana. Ethiopia. Khartoum. Aswan? 3. Mrs. Tilscher chanted 4. Chalky pyramids rubbed to dust 5. That for an hour, then a skittle of milk 6. Laugh of a bell 7. This was better than home 8. Glowed like a sweet shop 9. ?coloured paper? ?enthralling books? 10. ?good gold star? 11. ?Mrs. Tilscher loved you? 12. ?slowly, carefully, shaved? ? asyndeton (without and) 13. ?xylophone?s nonsense? 14. inky tadpoles changed from commas to exclamation marks 15. ?jumping and croaking out of the lunch queue? 16. dunce 17. kicked him 18. stared at your parents, appalled, when you got back home 19. smiled, then turned away 20. ?hot, fractious untidy? 21. air tasted of electricity- gustatory 22. ?sexy sky?- alliteration, pathetic fallacy 23. ??sky split open into a thunderstorm? ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Carol Ann Duffy section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Carol Ann Duffy essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    How has Duffy used classical myths in order to comment on the nature of ...

    5 star(s)

    The relationship here, is now at a point where it is almost humorous, whereby the woman goes off with another woman, where as the man is left trapped still inside a woman's body and having to go off with other men.

  2. Compare and contrast Carol Ann Duffys treatment of love and language in the poems ...

    poem has been set out in short couplets which look like text messages, each being small so it is as if it is being read off of a mobile phone. Text, unlike You, uses very basic punctuation which once again reflects the content, as one does not usually see punctuation

  1. In Mrs Tilscher’s class and Valentine

    'Inky tadpoles.' This description is very visual and helps us 'see' the blots and dashes as the children learnt to use ink pens.

  2. Three poems by Carol Ann Duffy - In Mrs Tilscher's Class.

    This change is described well by the poet, the wording is just right. Very well done to the poet. Towards the end of the school the weather gets worse. "That feverish July, the air tasted of electricity" The word "feverish" reminds you of cold and fast winds in that month.

  1. Compare 3 poems by Carol Ann Duffy in which she shows us that things ...

    She realises that her parents are not always truthful. It was not a stork that delivered her to her mother's lap. The discovery causes her to 'stare at her parents appalled.' Another revelation that is made in the poem is that Mrs Tilscher will not always be there for you.

  2. Discuss the ways in which Carol Ann Duffy explores the theme of alienation in ...

    The speaker could be self-centred as a result of his alienation as he does not have any friends to be fond of and talk to, so he has withdrawn from society. The speaker also seem to glamorise himself, thinking he is a film star for example, "observing his actions dispassionately

  1. Carol Ann Duffy - Childhood and Youth

    This is reflected in "Mrs Tilscher's Class" where the primary school children are bored of the primary school, and are curious to know more about the world, e.g "how they were born." This shows that the school system in the 20th century did not satisfy the needs of children and

  2. War Photographer by Carol Ann Duffy is a poem which explores the theme of ...

    The theme of religion is predominant throughout the poem. The Photographer is repeatedly compared to a priest as they share many similarities both in their work and their isolation. In the second stanza the photographer is making a comparison between the place he is from and the places he has been.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work