Creating a Poetry Classroom

We know that schools who use poetry in the ways listed below have children and teachers that are more confident and more engaged poetry readers and writers. This section of Poetryline contains materials to support best practice in the teaching of poetry. For more information please refer to our publication Poetry in Primary Schools: What we know works. This research is summarised below with links to the content the website has to support your teaching of poetry.

1. Developing a poetry friendly classroom and school that inspires, excites and enthuses children and celebrates the value of poetry and language - use our Booklists to help source new collections of poetry to spark your children's interest.

2. Providing many and varied opportunities to lift poems from the page and bring them to life – reading poetry aloud, performing, dramatising, joining in and hearing poets perform their own work - investigate our online library of poets performing their own work. 

3. Encouraging talk about and connecting to children’s personal experience, giving children permission and opportunities to share and write about themselves, their feelings and important events using poetic forms - find out more about what inspires professional poets to write with our Poet Interviews.

4. Developing teachers’ knowledge, confidence and expertise in their own poetry repertoire and about the teaching of poetry - for guidance about the terms and forms that are associated with poetry visit our online guide to poetic forms and devices.

5. Building poetry into every aspect of the curriculum and not limiting the study or writing of poetry to the literacy curriculum - professional poets write across a huge variety of themes. To support this we have tagged all the poems on the site with their theme.

6. Knowing about and being confident to write and read poetry in a range of models. Understanding that there are many forms, shapes and sizes of poetry and it doesn’t always have to rhyme! For guidance about the terms and forms that are associated with poetry visit our online guide to poetic forms and devices.

7. Appreciating that poetry study supports reading, phonics and language development throughout the primary school age range - our poetry CPD and phonics courses investigate this relationship in detail.

8. Working with professional poets so that children can understand the process of poetry creation, performance and presentation.

9. Understanding the importance of art, drama, music and dance to support and enhance children’s poetry writing and develop responses - explore the Key Teaching Approaches and to see them in the context of exploreing a collection explore our Teaching Sequences

10. Giving children’s own poetry an audience using a variety of forms - over the years we have supported publication of children's poetry anthologies and performances.

For further research about poetry in the primary school the research and publications section in the left hand menu provides a small selection of the materials available.