National Poetry Day!

Poetry is an area I need more experience with…and I have just the books to help build my knowledge!

I am loving these books and I have spent some quality time delving into each one…they are vastly different and I appreciate their individuality the more I read them.

At the moment I have only the sampler to enjoy but even the selection of poems and illustrations in this sample is incredible. In university we studied Blake’s The Tiger poem and it was so lovely to read and enjoy it again. In reading the introduction by Louise Bolongaro, Head of Picture Books, I was struck by her her closing statement, “hope that all the wonderful poems here might make your heart sing and your skin tingle, and make you a poetry person, too”. By giving the children access to high quality poems every day of the year, we are offering them the perfect opportunity to feel confident with poems and not to shy away from them. With plenty of animals covered….aardvarks, anteaters, fleas, pelicans and polar bears, there is so much to enjoy. The illustrations are sublime and so incredibly designed to fit perfectly with the poems. The hardback book is on my Christmas wish list…from me to me! It is the ultimate Christmas gift for 2020!

I can still recite some of the devices we learned in school to help us remember spelling and grammar rules, so this book is aptly timed to get into schools to help students. English is widely known for it’s difficulties…so many rules and so many exceptions to those rules. These little ditties and poems should hopefully make a difference to the trickier spelling rules. The illustrations are fun and full of extra details for students to pore over. I particularly liked the 7 Secret Animals poem, which finds animal names in everyday words. Some of the poems make me want to hone my inner Eliza Dolittle and begin elocution lessons, such as The Rain on the Train! Brilliant fun and sure to be a winner in classrooms!

At the last Federation of Children’s Book Groups Annual Conference, Laura Mucha was one of the poets entertaining and sharing their poems with the attendees. She was energetic, fun and inspiring and when I saw this collection I knew it would be excellent. I was not wrong! This is a fabulous collection of poems and perfect for reading aloud. As a massive fan of anything fairytale, I was thrilled with the title of the collection as well as the re-telling of Rapunzel and Three Bears Vs Goldilocks. These will inspire young readers to enjoy the fun side of poetry and to see the vast opportunities poems give to a writer. I was thoroughly entertained with this collection, and plan to share with students later this week!

A lovely heartwarming collection of poems on subjects ranging from protecting our planet, nature and a new favourite for me, about butterflies. These poems are rhythmic and lyrical, perfect for sharing aloud with a class. I particularly liked the poem, Naming your Days. Some days you feel up and others down, and this poem shapes those emotions in a new way and could provide an outlet for children needing to express themselves differently. The colourful cover immediately draws the eyes and invites the reader in!

An enchanting collection of poems about magic, fantastical creatures and witches and wizards. Perfect for Autumn reading, these will delight, thrill and chill. I love the use of poems from literature’s greats interspersed with the current great poets we love today! The famous witches scene is wonderfully illustrated alongside the speech we all know and recite come Halloween, “Double, double, toil and trouble”, Which also inspired the title of this collection. With poems to suit every reader…long poems, short poems, funny and silly- I think everyone could easily find a new favourite amongst the pages of this hardback Joy!

Nursery Rhymes for Feminist Times, these are perfect for new generations of nursery rhyme readers. Nursery rhymes have been around for a long time, and perhaps they are too old fashioned for our young readers. This delightful book has twisted the old rhymes on their head to make some new feminist versions where the girls do the rescuing, fixing and growing up with ambition! I actually squealed when this arrived, in part for its sheer beauty and in part for the new rhymes to love! My daughter loves these and compares the old to the new while giggling and appreciating the new even more! A top Christmas gift pick for the little girls in my life.

This book needs no introduction having taken Twitter and the world by storm. Joseph Coelho has immense talent and this story, told in poems is a true testament to it. Combining the story of a girl mourning the loss of her father and a collection of poems, this is an ingenious way to get children enjoying and analysing poems for truth and understanding. I have read and re-read and each time I feel that I come away with a deeper understanding of the story and the girl. Emotional, imaginative and powerful, this book is sure to claim awards! Kate Milner expertly illustrates some of the poems, ensuring a deep connection between the text and drawings.

Don’t forget to tune in for the CLiPPA Poetry Award Shortlist Announcement today at 9am! This is a great way to immerse yourself and your class/school in poetry. I was lucky enough to attend the awards last year and it was so wonderful to listen to the poets perform their poems, and students perform their own interpretations. A fantastic award led by the CLPE.

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