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20 October 2014
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Poetry - lesson plan

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  1. To read and understand the structure of a range of poems, including narrative, nonsense, haiku.
  2. To recognise a range of linguistic features used to create meaning in poetry, including simile, metaphor, alliteration, rhyme, personification, repetition.

National Curriculum

1i, 1j, 1k, 3a, 3b, 3d.


You will need Adobe Acrobat reader to access the PDF files. BBC Webwise has a complete guide to downloading and installing Adobe Acrobat reader.

Teaching activities

Class Work

  1. Arrange the children in groups and give each group a range of different poems (general resource - Off By Heart - Celebrity Video Recitals) - narrative, nonsense, haiku, shape, rhyming.
  2. Ask each group to read the poems and establish their general meaning.
  3. Ask each group to rate the poems, deciding together which ones they prefer and why.
  4. Give five labels to each group - narrative poem, nonsense poem, haiku, shape poem, rhyming poem. Ask the children to match the labels to the appropriate poems. Allow ten minutes for the children to discuss and record key facts about the types of poems alongside each label.
  5. Ask for feedback from the children to establish key information about each type of poem.
  6. Read the Bitesize poetry pages to address any misconceptions.

Group/paired work

  1. Read the Bitesize poetry activity aloud together several times, establishing some fluency and developing a clear sense of the events outlined in it.
  2. Allow pairs to read each verse and discuss their answers to each series of questions, before discussing as a group.
  3. Ask the children to establish what kind of a poem this is and which linguistic devices the author has used and to what effect.


  1. Ask the children to watch Melvin and Steven explaining poetry.
  2. Divide the class into teams and complete the Bitesize poetry quiz.


Ask the children to complete the Poetry worksheet (PDF 787KB).

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