Language Development and Creative Expression Through Nonsense Verse


The present article examines the development of language skills through unconventional expression as used in the nonsense verse of Edward Lear and Lewis Carroll. It analyzes student reaction to and comprehension of these readings from an extratextual perspective prior to instructor-led readings and peer interpretation exercises. Student exercises to be examined include presumed definitions of nonsense vocabulary prior to reading as well as theorized meanings based on contextual information realized upon full review of the text. Paratextual information pertaining to the readings are shared to explore the challenges of teacher-led discussions of the extant artistic and colloquial language and determine whether or to what degree presentation of this material is effective for language building. The study acknowledges the limitations of L2 studies without grounded, standardized vocabulary, but notes that language has a tendency to rapidly evolve and provides case studies of elevated colloquialisms, coined words/phrases, and non-standard expressions in common use. It concludes that the often untaught expressions, idioms, and dialect contained in this type of material provides holistic value to language learning via cultural context.

Author Information
Rocky A. Burton, Toyo University, Japan

Paper Information
Conference: ACE2022
Stream: Language Development & Literacy

This paper is part of the ACE2022 Conference Proceedings (View)
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To cite this article:
Burton R. (2023) Language Development and Creative Expression Through Nonsense Verse ISSN: 2186-5892 The Asian Conference on Education 2022: Official Conference Proceedings
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Posted by James Alexander Gordon