Our search for the 2021 Poetry By Heart champions has begun!

Our search for the 2021 Poetry By Heart champions has begun!

It’s National Poetry Day – if you or your students have a poem by heart, now’s the time to share it! It’s also a great day to launch your Poetry By Heart competition if you’re ready. But if that’s all too soon, another great time to launch it in your school or college library is as part of National Libraries Week 5-10 October. Many PBH competitions are organised by fabulous school librarians! Or kick it off by setting a half term challenge to learn one poem!

Here are some ways to get started.

For information
We have a powerpoint all ready for you to use to introduce Poetry By Heart to your students. It’s in the Teaching Zone – 2020 Competition Guide and Calendar section (log in to access this).

For inspiration
Show videos of some of this year’s finalists in action – the youngest ones on the left, scroll right and the children get older! They are all amazing and wonderful! Or use the age-graded performance galleries: 7+, 11+, 14+ and 16+.

To give it a go together
Use our one-lesson-fun activity to get students learning a poem in under an hour. The images to go with this activity are in the Poems Out of the Box section of the Teaching Zone on the website. Lots of competitions last year started right here.

For a home learning challenge
How about setting a home learning or half term challenge to learn one poem from the Poetry By Heart website? There are loads to choose from! We’ve added more poems to the 7+ timeline and the 11+ timeline, and more to the fun and playful Mix It Up. There’s also a 14+ timeline, and showcases of First World War poetryRomantic poetry and Shakespeare’s Sonnets for students who are ready to tackle those.

When students come back, invite students to share them aloud in a low key way. You’ll find out who cracked it, who could get there with a bit of encouragement, and who might want to take part in your competition – you only need 3 students, though of course you can run it with everyone if you want to!

Have fun! And remember – there’s also a competition entry for all members of school staff and PGCE tutors and trainees. Which poem are you going to learn this year?