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Poetry Recital and Writing Competition


As part of our annual celebrations for National Poetry Day, your class teacher will be sharing the poem in your year group which children are encouraged to learn - off by heart - for the poetry recital next Thursday. I talked to the children about this in assembly yesterday.


Here are the poems to learn:


Year 6

Sonnet with particles of gold


Today scientists discovered the origins of gold: 

the sound of egg noodles crisping up in the wok, 

the garden carpeted in kōwhai petals, 

the way my phone corrects raumati (summer) to rainstorm. 

The day after my grandmother died was white-gold in colour. 

A star explodes and wings are found among the debris 

along with pieces of a character I never memorised— 

our only name for her, 婆, a woman 女 beneath a wave 波. 

“Drift,” she mouths softly in English, “what is drift?” 

My mother translates into her language, not one of mine. 

I try to make myself remember by writing 婆 over and over 

on squares of paper covering the walls so I am surrounded 

by the women and the water radicals they hold close. 

The tips of waves touch me in my sleep. 

(Nina Mingya Powles)


Year 5

Which Wild One?


Which creature would you be? 

Today I’d choose a whale. We all need 

to roam and there’s no greater space 


than an ocean – a galaxy of salt water 

right here on earth. And who wouldn’t 

want to be that great hulk of life? To see


in sound, to talk in song, to cruise the blue 

or lose yourself in endless days of play: 

lurching skywards, flopping backwards, 


ever huffing lung-loads of warm air 

back into the world. Tell me: 

which other beast is as wise 

as the moon, has the heart of a star - 

or a belly full of memories

from way back when?

(James Carter)


Year 4

More Pointless Questions




which glass do you 


A bowl of glass 

or a pond that ripples 

when the winds pass? 


Little bird 

little bird 

which do you prefer? 

A house of wires 

or a branch 

that’s a stage 

for feathered choirs? 


Red rose

red rose 

which do you prefer? 

A vase once used 

to contain dry flowers 

or a patch of ground 

blooming with briars? 


Putting such questions 

to a goldfish 

or a bird 

or a rose 

is pointless I suppose.

(John Agard)


Year 3



Once there was an elephant, 

Who tried to use the telephant. 

No! No! I mean an elephone 

Who tried to use the telephone. 

(Dear me! I am not certain quite 

That even now I’ve got it right.) 

Howe’er it was, he got his trunk 

Entangled in the telephunk. 

The more he tried to get it free, 

The louder buzzed the telephee. 

(I fear I’d better drop the song 

Of elephop and telephong!) 

(Laura Richards)


Year 2

Arabian Nights 


Here is a ring 

On a silver dish. 

Put it on your finger 

and make a wish. 

Here is a genie 

Who waits in a flask. 

If you want a favour 

whisper and ask. 

Here is a carpet 

that knows how to fly. 

Climb on. 

Sit tight 

Up into the sky! 

(Tony Mitton)

Year 1

A Little Seed


A little seed for me to sow 

A little soil to make it grow 

A little hole, a little pat, 

A little wish, and that is that, 

A little sun, a little shower. 

A little while – 

And then, a flower!

(Mabel Watts)


The second part of the day is writing a poem for the Seaburn Dene Primary School Amazing Poem Award.
This year, the theme is My Reasons to Be Cheerful...
The poem could be rhyme, free verse, limerick, haiku, list poem - the possibilities are endless. On one subject or lots of things.
Entries can be handwritten, printed, painted but the deadline is: Thursday, October 7th - submitted to their class teacher.
The winning entry will be published in the Sunderland Echo.
I am looking forward to all our children's creative efforts!