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The Cantebury Tails? What are those? A story? Perhaps a poem? Who really knows? If anyone is a book worm, likes British Literature, or just happens to be in the Junior English class at St. Bede Academy, all know what The Cantebury Tails is. The Cantebury Tails is a poem written by Chaucer. In this poem he plays with the words to make them sound like the characters are really not what they seem. The poem is about a group that all meet at an inn. The innkeeper says that he will allow them what they want as long as he can go with the group and that everyone tells two tails on the way up and two on the way back. This is the basis of the poem. An incident recently occurred involving high school students and The Cantebury Tales. This took place in Eureka, Illinois. The English class there has the same book as the Junior English class. The conflict involved the English teacher and the parents of students. The parents thought it was morally wrong to have their children read The Cantebury Tales. The teacher argued that it was a well written piece that should be learned in high school. The parents thought that Chaucer had exposed too much corruption to the reader. They thought the truth was wrong. The teacher objected because sometimes the truth does hurt.

While reading The Cantebury Tails, the class was to get in groups and pick a character. One of the classes had the Friar, the Reeve, the Summoner, the Wife of Bath, and the Pardoner. Each group was to dress up like their character, read the part of the poem that described their character, and write a summury of the character and how Chaucer the author described them and how Chaucer the narator described them. The groups had a wide variety of costumes. This is a new and fun way to learn. It brings about the togetherness of people working in groups and the amusing part of a class. Mrs. Martin often has the class work in groups for many different reasons. It is a new learning experience!


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