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National Poetry Day - 3rd October 2019

By Charlotte Carus on 19th September 2019

National Poetry Day is held every autumn, this year celebrating its 25th Anniversary and to support this fantastic initiative we have selected a few of our favourite poetry books to help inspire the poet in you and your children. Find out more!

Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
   With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eves run;
To bend with apples the moss'd cottage-trees,
   And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
      To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
   With a sweet kernel; to set budding more,
And still more, later flowers for the bees,
Until they think warm days will never cease,
      For summer has o'er-brimm'd their clammy cells.

 
It was 200 years ago that John Keats, aged just 24, wrote his Ode to Autumn, in praise of the beauty and decay of the season and it is one of our nation's favourite poems. National Poetry Day is held every autumn, this year celebrating its 25th Anniversary and to support this fantastic initiative we have selected a few of our favourite poetry books to help inspire the poet in you and your children. Poetry is experiencing something of a renaissance within the children's book world, driven by the popularity of verse novels; The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo and Long Way Down by Jason Reynolds have both been recent award winners. Using hip hop, rap music and spoken word events as an introduction, modern poetry is now seen as accessible to a wide audience of YA readers.

Be The Change, written by Liz Brownlee, Roger Stevens, Matt Goodfellow is highlighted as a recommended read for National Poetry Day, three of our best poets for children come together in this excellent new anthology with a challenge for their young audience: go out and help change the world!

Jackie Kay's emotionally charged poetry anthology for all ages, Red, Cherry Red is reissued. Brimming with humanity - with love, anger, frustration and flashes of humour - this engaging, accessible anthology makes a richly rewarding gift for language lovers of all ages.

Just announced on the UKLA 2020 longlist, A Kid in my Class by Rachel Rooney explores the characters of a classroom of children, using different styles of verse. Also longlisted in the UKLA awards, in A Year of Nature Poems Joseph Coelho's observations of nature are sure to make every reader find something unexpected. A keen eye and a compassionate mind takes you through a year of intricately-crafted celebrations of the wild and beautiful. 

Winner of the CLiPPA 2019, Everything All At Once follows a week in a secondary school - punchy poetry dealing with all aspects of a teen's school life. Steven Camden's poems speak to the kaleidoscope of teen experience and life at secondary school.
You can read more about Steven's win and the CLiPPA here.

All together.

Same place.

Same walls.

Same space.

Every emotion under the sun

Faith lost.

Victories won.

It doesn't stop.

Until the bell.

Now it's heaven

Now it's hell.

Who knows?

Not me

I just wrote what I can see

So what's it about?

Here's my response

It's about everything

All at once.'

Founded in 1994 by William Sieghart, using using live events, classroom resources and web-based activities, National Poetry Day has engaged millions of people with poetry. This year the theme, 'Truth', invites us to explore through poetry the concept of truth.  What is truth? Are there forms of truth? Is truth subjective? And how are we defined by it?

Everyone is invited to join in, whether by organising events, displays, competitions or by simply posting favourite lines of poetry on social media using
#nationalpoetryday.

There are some great resources, for lesson plans and ideas, to download nationalpoetryday.co.uk/education/free-education-resource-downloads.

You can find out more about National Poetry Day and the events planned at nationalpoetryday.co.uk

Follow@PoetryDayUK

And you can find futher recommended poetry books in our Poetry section.

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