National Poetry Day resources

Added 26 Aug 2020

National Poetry Day 2021 banner3

National Poetry Day 2020 was celebrated on Thursday 1 October 2020. The theme for the year was vision, and we developed free classroom resources to help teachers mark the day and explore vision through poetry. These resources, along with our digital poet resources, and activities for families can be used at any time of year to build a love of reading, writing or performing poems.

For 2021, the theme will be choice, and the celebration will take place on Thursday 7 October. We'll be adding updated information and resources to this page as the date draws nearer.

National Poetry Day 2020

We have teamed up with National Poetry Day to create two classroom resources for Key Stage 2 and Key Stage 3.

The National Poetry Day lesson plan resources provide a set of activities about how we see things. Poetry can be remarkably effective in helping us to pause and think about familiar things in a new way, or experience them from another person's perspective. Students are given an example poem and asked to work in groups exploring ideas about the poem. Then, using these ideas as inspiration, each student creates their own poem before sharing it with the group or class.

Each lesson plan includes:

  • A starter to get pupils involved and introduce the themes within the poem
  • A team activity to generate ideas
  • A writing activity where pupils create their own poem.

The activities are clearly linked to the national curriculum for Key Stage 2 and 3. They support learning and developing confidence in writing, storytelling, working together and performance.

Digital poet in residence resources

We have also worked with professional poet Simon Mole to develop resources that allow you to have a poet in your classroom for National Poetry Day! Simon developed two new lesson plans on the 2020 theme of Vision, helping pupils to write their own five-line poem - and learn what a kenning is - or to write a poem by playing a game.

Access these free poetry lesson plans, and many more, on our Digital Poet resource page.

For families

Celebrating National Poetry Day isn't just for schools! On our Words for Life web portal for families we have a video and tips on writing poetry from Joseph Coelho, and on our Zone In pages for students aged 13+ you can find advice on writing narrative poetry from Paul Cree, and how to edit your poems from Dean Atta.

You can also find more National Poetry Day resources, learn about events and celebrations taking place, and get involved by visiting the National Poetry Day website.