A List of Poetry Resources For Older Primary Students.

A recent request for poetry resources for older primary students has prompted me to consider some of the resources I use for this age group.

I have developed an extensive list of resources over the years. I keep many of these books in my poet’s suitcase  and regularly share these resources as an initial poetry tasting with students. The idea behind this approach is based on the belief that young poets need to read a lot of poetry in order to successfully embark upon the writing of poetry. I want to do more than immerse them in poetry, I want to ‘dunk’ them in poetry and all it involves.

An observant young poet told me this week after spending an hour investigating and researching a plethora of poetic forms, - ‘When you write poetry, you can make your own rules, but then you have to stick to them.’ This is the kind of awareness we need to develop among our inexperienced poets.

So, here is a list of some of the poetry books I use to assist young writers to better understand and hopefully embrace poetry as part of their writing lives:

Narrative/Free Verse Poetry
Quick Let’s Get Out of Here, Michael Rosen
The Hypnotiser, Michael Rosen
Mind Your Own Business, Michael Rosen
Hey World, Here I Am, Jean Little
Water Bombs, Steven Herrick

Verse Novels
Pookie Aleera Is Not My Boyfriend, Steven Herrick
Pearl Verses The World, Sally Murphy
Witness, Karen Hesse
Love That Dog, Sharon Creech
His Name Is Fire, Catherine Bateson

I Am The Ocean, Suzanna Marshak

Poems For Two Voices
Joyful Noise, Paul Fleischman

Poetry Books embracing a single theme
Poetrees, Douglas Florian
Comets, Stars, The Moon, and Mars, Douglas Florian
Heard It In The Playground, Allan Ahlberg
Machine Poems, Collected by Jill Bennett
Honey I Love, Eloise Greenfield
Poems Written by Children
Salting The Ocean, 100 poems by poets, Selected by Naomi Shihab Nye

List Poems
Bing, Bang, Boing, Poems and Drawings by Douglas Florian
The Important Book, Margaret Wise Brown

Michael Rosen’s A to Z –The Best Children’s Poetry from Agard to Zepeniah
Poems To Perform, Julia Donaldson

The Dog’s Been Sick in The Honda, Colin Thompson
Unspun Socks From A Chicken’s Laundry, Spike Milligan

Professional Reading:
Poetry Mentor Texts, Making Reading and Writing Connections, K-8, Lynne. R. Dorfman & Rose Cappelli
Poetry Everywhere, Jack Collom & Sheryl Noethe
For The Love of Poetry, Mandy Tunica


Michael Rosen –

Steven Herrick –


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