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Who is C.J Dennis?

Student activities

Task no. 1

Who is C.J Dennis?

Explain to students that they are going to learn about a well-known Australian author. The activities will culminate in them learning and reciting a poem, as well as writing their own poem which will be placed into a class book.

Look at the sources below and answer the following questions as a class:

  • Who has heard of C.J Dennis?
  • When do you think the photograph of Thomas and Sylvia Greentree may have been taken? Justify your reason.
  • Does the photograph give any indication of what Thomas may have done for a living?

Your teacher will briefly show you other photographs from that era.

Look at the series of photos of C.J Dennis in comical poses. What words would you use to describe him after seeing the photos?

C.J. Dennis, poet - portrait, n.d. / Monteath, Melb., ca. 1925
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Thomas and Sylvia Greentree, ca. 1885-1886
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C.J. Dennis, [ca. 1910] / [comic portraits by unknown photographer], ca. 1910
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Task no. 2

State Library of NSW presents Libby Hathorn's Poets of Australia: C.J Dennis.

Libby Hathorn is a well-known Australian poet and author. She has written and narrated the clip about C.J Dennis below. Briefly take a look at some of her other work.

Your teacher will give each student a sticky note. Write down one interesting fact you've learnt about C.J Dennis on your sticky note, these sticky notes will be placed on a topic wall.

The first of a series of 3 films exploring the work and life of C J Dennis and his contribution to Australia's literary heritage. Featuring original manuscripts and artefacts from the State Library of NSW, the film has been written and narrated by well know poet and author Libby Hathorn for use in primary and secondary schools.

State Library of NSW presents Libby Hathorn's Poets of Australia: C.J. Dennis

Caption on bottom

The first of a series of 3 films exploring the work and life of C J Dennis and his contribution to Australia's literary heritage. Featuring original manuscripts and artefacts from the State Library of NSW, the film has been written and narrated by well know poet and author Libby Hathorn for use in primary and secondary schools.