About Geoffrey Chaucer:
Geoffrey Chaucer, an English poet, was born in 1342. Historians are uncertain about his exact date of birth. Geoffrey's well-to-do parents, John Chaucer and Agnes Copton, possessed several buildings in the vintage quarter in London. Not much is known about Geoffrey's school career. He must have had some education in Latin and Greek. Out of school he went on as a page in the household of the Countess of Ulster. Chaucer rose in royal employment and became a knight of the shire for Kent. As a member of the king's household, Chaucer was sent on diplomatic errands throughout Europe. From all these activities, he gained the knowledge of society that made it possible to write The Canterbury Tales. Chaucer died in October 1400 and was buried in Westminster Abbey in London. He was the first of those that are gathered in what we now know as the Poet's Corner in Westminster Abbey.



About The Canterbury Tales:
Geoffrey Chaucer wrote The Canterbury Tales, a collection of stories in a frame story, between 1387 and 1400. It is the story of a group of thirty people who travel as pilgrims to Canterbury (England). The pilgrims, who come from all layers of society, tell stories to each other to kill time while they travel to Canterbury.
If we trust the General Prologue, Chaucer intended that each pilgrim should tell two tales on the way to Canterbury and two tales on the way back. He never finished his enormous project and even the completed tales were not finally revised. Scholars are uncertain about the order of the tales. As the printing press had yet to be invented when Chaucer wrote his works, The Canterbury Tales has been passed down in several handwritten manuscripts.



You can elicit the following types of information from your students--

1)      What is Springtime like in places where you have lived or visited?

2)      What kinds of activities do people do in Springtime?

3)      Are there famous religious monuments/pilgrimages in places you have lived or visited?

*examples include: Turn and Talk, Illustrations, Whole-group or small-group share, Compare/Contrast personal experiences with Venn diagrams… all depending on how much time you have and how engaged the students are in sharing their experiences. Allowing entering/emerging ELs to draw or gesture (or use a bit of their first language) rather than speak in English can further scaffold participation.