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Joseph Coelho

Language: English
Genre: Poetry
Age group: 6-8

Joseph Coelho shares his latest picture book, If All The World Were, and leads you through an exciting activity to help you create your own poetry. You can get ideas and activities to help you introduce poetry in the classroom in this resource.  

If you only do one thing

We know that time can be tight, so here is just one activity you could do to engage pupils before or after watching Joseph Coelho's Authors Live event.

What is a poem? LIT 2-01a, LIT 2-02a, LIT 2-04a, LIT 2-07a, LIT 2-09a, LIT 2-10a, LIT 2-11a

Ask your pupils what they think a poem is. Traditionally we assume that poems must have rhythm and rhyme, but is that always the case? Do your pupils know of any poems or poets? Do they have any they like or dislike?

You can also show pupils poems by James Carter(this will open in a new window). He sets the poems out as calligrams; poems that show their main theme or meaning in their shape. What do your pupils think of poems such as What to say if you meet a ghost or Viking O’clock? Does this challenge their ideas of what poetry can and should be?

Now show pupils John Henley reading his poem What a Poem’s Not(this will open in a new window). John has worked through the alphabet and used each letter to describe what he thinks a poem is not. Do your pupils agree with his definition? What about what a poem is? Can they come up with a similar style list, using the alphabet, to describe what they think a poem is based on this and their previous discussion?

For shorter clips from this event visit the BBC Scotland Learning(this will open in a new window) website.

A full transcript of this event is available to download.

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