Explain to pupils that today they will be writing a poem for Young Writers’ Rhymecraft poetry competition. Tell them that they can write a poem on any subject or in any style (or you can decide this for them before the lesson.)
Give each pupil a Rhymecraft worksheet as this has been tailored to work alongside the video lesson.
Main Teaching Activity
Start the video. The video is narrated by The BFP, (The Big Friendly Poet), and he will prompt pupils with several short activities that will help them build their poem. The first activity is for pupils to consider what they will write about ‐ ‘The Foundations’ of their poem. Pause the video when instructed. Ask pupils to write their ideas down. (Optional: Discuss ideas as a class.)
The BFP will now explain rhyme, metaphor and hyperbole poetic techniques, which are example of ‘The Bricks’ when building a poem. Pause the video when instructed and ask pupils to complete the activity. (Optional: Discuss their examples as a class.)
The BFP will now talk about conjuctions, description, powerful verbs and punctuation ‐ ‘The Cement’, before asking pupils to complete a short activity. Pause the video when instructed and ask pupils to complete the activity. (Optional: Discuss their examples as a class.)
The BFP will now explain a selection of poetic forms (odes, sense poetry, free verse and cinquains), ‐ ‘The Roof’ of the poem and ask pupils to complete their planning on their worksheet. Pause the video when instructed and ask pupils to complete the activity. (Optional: Discuss their examples as a class.)
The BFP will now perform a special rap for your pupils, which includes top tips on how to write a poem!
Your pupils are now ready to write their own poem on the back page of the Rhymecraft worksheet (or they can type up their poem!) They need to ensure they write their name, surname and age on their work.
Ask the children to work in pairs to read their poem to their partner. Their partner is to provide feedback; something they liked about the poem and a suggestion on how to improve. With younger children their poem can be worked on in small groups or with an adult’s assistance. Once feedback is received, allow pupils extra time to make any changes to their work.
This lesson takes approximately an hour to complete, depending on the size and ability of the class. You can provide additional time for pupils to write their poem, should you wish to. The main teaching activity can be done in class time, (approximately 40 minutes) and poems can be written as homework.
Ask pupils to highlight the foundations, bricks, cement and roof on the examples on the worksheet
Challenge more able pupils by asking them to include all of the poetic techniques in this lesson plan
Suggest a poetic form, such as haiku or narrative poem, or ask the pupil to write in the style of a famous poet ‐ this is an ideal way to challenge pupils who have a flair for language and poetry writing
For less able pupils, suggest they use their name to write an acrostic on the theme. Ask them to describe the colours and sounds of what they are imagining. Acrostics don’t have to rhyme and as the word length can vary greatly it can be adapted to the individual’s learning needs and abilities
Less able pupils can work in pairs or small groups and have an adult’s assistance
To extend the activity, ask pupils to draw a picture to illustrate their poem and copy their poem onto their artwork
To extend the activity, ask pupils to research poetic forms they’d like to try
To extend the activity, ask pupils to learn their poem off by heart and perform it to the rest of the class
This activity can also be used as a wet playtime, after-school club or homework activity
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