by Walt Whitman
We've identified these texts as great options for text pairings based on similar themes, literary devices, topic, or writing style. Supplement your lesson with one or more of these options and challenge students to compare and contrast the texts. To assign a paired text, click on the text to go to its page and click the "Assign Text" button there.
When I Heard the Learn'd Astronomer
- Walt Whitman
In this poem by the "father of free verse," the speaker prefers nature to the astronomer's cold, organized lecture.Pair “When I Heard the Learn’d Astronomer” with “World Below the Brine” and ask students to compare the style and theme of these two Walt Whitman poems. How does the rhythm differ between these two texts? How does this reflect the differing topics discussed?
There Will Come Soft Rains
- Sara Teasdale
"There Will Come Soft Rains" (1920) is a 12-line poem by Sara Teasdale in her collection Flame and Shadow. The poem imagines nature reclaiming a battlefield after the fighting is finished. The poem also alludes to the idea of human extinction by war (lines 10 and 12), which was not a commonplace idea until the invention of nuclear weapons, 25 years later.Pair “There Will Come Soft Rains” with “World Below the Brine” and ask students to discuss how each poet portrays nature. How do the poets view man’s place in nature? What effect does this have on the overall themes of the two texts?
- Emma Bartley
In Emma Bartley’s “First Pet,” the speaker describes a pet hermit crab.Pair “World Below the Brine” with “First Pet” and ask students to discuss how the speakers of the two poems describe the natural world. What do you learn about the speakers of each poem through their observations of the natural world? How does each poem comment on the relationship between humans and nature?
- Nathaniel Hawthorne
This poem explores the mystery of life after death through descriptions of the peaceful depths of the ocean.Pair “World Below the Brine” with “The Ocean” and ask students to compare the two texts about life under the sea. Why are these Romantic writers intrigued by the depths of the ocean?
Why Dolphins Make Us Nervous
- Robert Krulwich
In the informational text “Why Dolphins Man Us Nervous,” Robert Krulwich discusses dolphins’ intelligence and how it compares to humans’ intelligence.Pair “World Below the Brine” with “Why Dolphins Make Us Nervous” and ask students to discuss how both texts explore the relationship between humans and animals. How do the speakers’ perspectives on animals in the two texts compare? How does the form of each text contribute to students’ views on animals?
I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud
- William Wordsworth
In William Wordsworth’s poem “I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud,” the speaker describes seeing a field of daffodils.Pair “World Below the Brine” with “I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud” and ask students to discuss how the speakers are impacted by the nature that surrounds them. How do the two poems explore the relationship between humans and nature? How does the form of the two poems contribute to their meaning?
- Jean Toomer
In Jean Toomer’s poem “Storm Ending,” a speaker describes a storm taking place above them through figurative language.Pair “World Below the Brine” with “Storm Ending” and ask student to discuss how the speakers of the two poems view nature. Why do they feel this way? How do the structures of the two poems contribute to their themes?
Octopus Sets Egg-Nurturing Record
- Bethany Brookshire
In the informational text “Octopus Sets Egg-Nurturing Record,” Bethany Brookshire discusses an octopus that spent nearly 4.5 years sitting on, and protecting, her eggs.Pair “World Below the Brine” with “Octopus Sets Egg-Nurturing Record” and ask students to discuss the amazing world that exists under the sea. How do both texts emphasize the incredible life that lives in the ocean? How do students think the speaker in “World Below the Brine” would react to an octopus setting the record for egg-nurturing?