National Poetry Day is back this Thursday, and to celebrate the outstanding children’s poetry available, we’re offering special packs!
But why is poetry important? Well, there are quite a few reasons. Poetry supports many other aspects of literacy, like grammar and punctuation. It also widens vocabulary, while also allowing children to get creative with the words they already know. It creates analytical readers who think about the effects words can have, and it makes children observe the world more closely. For struggling readers, the repetition and memorability of poetry is also great for building confidence.
So do we still need to reinvent poetry for children? Aren’t we beyond that now, with rap and rhyme firmly embedded in mainstream ‘poetry’? The 2018 CLiPPA (Centre for Literacy in Primary Poetry Award) winner, Karl Nova, is a rapper who uses his refreshing style to encourage children to believe they can be poets, too.
Nonetheless, some adults still worry that children won’t respond to learning poetry, when in fact the wit and directness of poetic language is really enjoyed by children. The word play, jokes and silly rhymes can bring an element of fun into the classroom, and a child’s favourite poem is often remembered all the way into adult life.
There is also something for everyone in poetry. Collections of poems often move effortlessly from comical, to thoughtful, to so ridiculous they could convince any sceptic of the fun of poetry. Some poems are destined to be read aloud to an adoring class, whilst others are best enjoyed alone, to allow children to reflect on the beauty and meaning of words.
So, to commemorate National Poetry Day and all things poetic, we have carefully selected works from some of the most celebrated children’s poets, many of which have been recognised by the Centre for Literacy in Primary Education as having made a spectacular contribution to the field. Discover the thoughtful and captivating perspectives of a diverse group of up-and-coming poets in Rising Stars: New Young Voices in Poetry, or marvel at Sarah Crossan’s beautiful lyricism in her second CLiPPA nominated work, Moonrise. I Bet I can Make you Laugh is the perfect collection if you need a giggle, whilst Neal Zetter’s Bees in my Bananas will have children in stitches. Teach children about an exciting new culture with Under the Moon and over the Sea and build their appreciation of endangered species and the beauty of the world around them in Adder, Bluebell, Lobster.
With such a wide selection to choose from, you are bound to find the perfect collection to engage the children you are trying to reach and awaken their love of poetry. You’ll probably find yourself enjoying the poems just as much as they do!