Poetry in Primary School

Poetry is a fun way for children to use language. In younger classes – the emphasis is on rhymes, riddles, nursery rhymes and jingles. There is a huge amount that can be done with poetry from recitation, responding by discussion, art, writing, making their own poems.

Starting a poetry lesson (responding and reciting)

Reading the poem

  • Listen to the teacher with text
  • Listen to the teacher without text
  • Listen to another child reading it
  • Listen to a recording (poet/professional)
  • Read it silently 
Focused discussion
  • What did you like?
  • What did you dislike?
  • Does the poem rhyme? Can you find sets of rhyming words?
  • What is the meaning of the poem?
  • What do you think this line means ______________________
  • Is there a hidden message in the poem?
  • What words are repeated? Why do you think the poet did this?
  • Examine the use of metaphors and similes
  • Examine the use of alliteration (seven sizzling sausages), onomatopoeia (boom, boing, splash, splat), imagery and assonance (The sailor said Hey to May/Do you like blue?/He received three emails today.) 
  • Compare two or more poems
Writing poetry
Acrostic poems – these are fantastic for all age groups. In infants children can write 1/2 words. In older classes they can write longer more descriptive sentences. Acrostics can be written using children’s names, seasons, food items (ice cream/hamburger), school, homework etc. 
Sunny

Picnics
Rainbows
Insects
Nests
Gardens
Sunny days playing with friends
Picnics with delicious food
Insects buzzing all around
Nests built in branches
Gardens growing full of life.
Shape poems – the words take the shape of the subject of the poem.
Haiku is a Japanese poem with 3 lines and 17 syllables. 
Line 1; 5 syllables
Line 2; 7 syllables
Line 3; 5 syllables

 Etsy

Pinterest
Limericks – have 5 lines. They are usually nonsense/silly poems. 
The 1st, 2nd and 5th lines rhyme and usually have the same number of syllables (8/9)
The 3rd and 4th lines rhyme and have the same number of syllables (5/6)
Limericks often start with ‘There once was a ….” or “There was a …”
Alliteration poem
Children should choose a letter and write a list of nouns, verbs and adjectives.
Useful websites/Documents
Scoil Net (PDF document – great ideas)



























































Clip Art from http://www.mycutegraphics.com and clickr



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