LONGLISTED FOR THE NORTH SOMERSET TEACHERS' BOOK AWARD POETRY CATEGORY
This is quite a collection of poems! David Harmer offers humorous poems mixed with moving and thought provoking ones.
Although this seems to be a collection written primarily to be performed and enjoyed out loud, there are many poems here that could also be used in class to inspire children to write their own poems or other types of writing.
Diwali, for example, could be used as a starting point for work on this festival as it would raise a number of questions to be further explored. The use of imagery and vocabulary chosen make it a joy to read and share. Children could explore personification and simile, creating their own images.
At Cider Mill Farm is a lovely way of presenting memories and discussing how things have changed. Often school buildings change over the course of a child's time there, provoking the 'I remember ...' opening line which could then be built on and developed. Some of the details the poem draws on are excellent- a great example for children to enjoy.
Heat hazing the air above the red rooftops...
All Kinds of Kids would make an amazing piece of performance poetry with children working together to plan and deliver the strong message about being individual. Extra verses would no doubt be inspired by children in the class performing!
So, if you're looking for a collection that offers a pleasing mix of styles and content, you won't be disappointed.
There's a Monster in the Garden by David Harmer, illustrated by Tim Archbold
Frances Lincoln ISBN: 978-1847805386