Download free resources and enter your students in a poetry-writing competition!
Teachers dreaming of poetry: your imaginings may well come true this year with the release of I Am the Seed that Grew the Tree: A Nature Poem for Every Day of the Year, a poetry book to ‘share, educate and treasure’ – and a truly magical collection to be enjoyed by children and adults alike.
Published by Nosy Crow in collaboration with the National Trust, this fully illustrated poetry collection is the first that allows teachers to follow the seasons through the year with pupils, through an astonishing mix of poems – from haiku to sonnets to rhymes and riddles – and including work from William Shakespeare, William Blake, Emily Dickinson, Matsuo Bashō and WB Yeats – to name only a handful.
The publication of I Am the Seed that Grew the Tree provides the perfect opportunity to get pupils excited about poetry, to engage with the world around them, and to inspire their own creative writing. Here are our top five tips for enjoying it in the classroom:
1. As a starter activity, ask children to bring in something from the natural world, whether it’s a conker, a twig or a leaf. Use the first 10 minutes of poetry lessons as free thinking time before coming up with words as a class to describe how these natural things look, feel, smell, sound, and even taste!
2. Spend an entire lesson (or even a week!) on one line or word in a poem, asking children to really zoom-in on the detail of what they read.
3. Don’t keep poetry in the classroom! Use everyday spaces such as the corridors, the playground, but especially outside spaces.
4. Write with your pupils! If you have asked them to read their work, read your own too!
5. Give pupils plenty of time to draft and redraft their own creative writing.
The book itself can be used with any primary school age group; its highly illustrated pages provide enough visuals to keep younger children engaged.
To help teachers, Nosy Crow has released some corresponding classroom resources for a selection of poems in the book – and these too can be easily differentiated to cater for different ages and abilities.
Activities included in the resources focus on using colour, shape and personification in poetry, as well as on illustration and performance.
The aim of the poetry resources is not only to encourage pupils to analyse the work of others, but also to feel confident in writing their own poems.
Teachers can incentivise this with the exclusive I Am the Seed poetry-writing competition, open to budding poets aged 7–11 years, and offering the chance for pupils to win a framed print of their poem illustrated by award-winning artist Frann Preston-Gannon.
From haiku to sonnets to rhymes and riddles, Nosy Crow are looking for poems inspired by nature, written in any form by either an individual pupil or a whole class.
The competition closes on 31 December 2018. You can find out more details for how to enter here.