Poetry book of the month June

Book Reviews for A Kid in My Class: Poems by By Rachel Rooney and ...

I have so many poetry books, that I use, that it’s always difficult to pick one out and say that it’s my book of the month, but I’m trying to be more disciplined and share my love of this art form so I’m going to try to pick anthologies that we can use right now, whether it’s directly with our classes or on-line with our pupils in the ‘ether’! The poems in A kid in my class, written by Rachel Rooney (winner of the CLiPPA Award) and illustrated by Chris Riddell (former UK Children’s Laureate) offer a wonderful range of different forms and characters that will be loved by your pupils.

I might begin by just looking at the illustrations and reading Rachel Rooney’s introduction and discussing the different characters that can be found in every class.
Then, I might ask the pupils to read four of the poems and discuss which one of them is most like themselves as there’s every sort of child here – the pushy one, the shy one, the day dreamer, the tough one, the whizz kid. Or I might ask them who they would or wouldn’t be friends with.

What I love about the collection is that they can be read and discussed, in depth, or used for writing. Pupils could explore similes by reading a couple of the poems , such as Cool or As shy as and then write their own about themselves or characters that could be found in school:

Another great poem is The Questioner. I would use this to challenge the pupils to identify the use of contractions and then to create their own versions using contractions – eg. I’d, I’ve, I’m, it’s, isn’t won’t, can’t , you’re, you’d, you’ll, doesn’t , that’s,  haven’t

I think that this poetry anthology will be really, useful right now, as they can be used so easily whilst we’re still in this difficult phase. Pupils will love the poems individually and as a collection. I’d create a class anthology to share with other classes and schools.