What is a Golden Shovel? with Peter Kahn

Poet and educator Peter Kahn has been teaching his students to write Golden Shovels for years. This “21st century sonnet” was created by Terrance Hayes when he used each word in Gwendolyn Brooks’ iconic poem ‘We Real Cool’ as part of his own poem.

Peter guides you through this exciting new form and encourages your students to create poems inspired by Gwendolyn Brooks, other poets, songwriters, film-makers and more!

Download the resource and enter your students into the Young Poets Network challenge by 31 March 2019 to win poetry prizes.

Creating Voices

This lesson plan by Teacher Trailblazer Lyndsey Chand takes an in-depth look at Enshia Li’s ‘unwritten letter from my great-grandmother to my great-grandfather, 1930’, a winning poem in the Foyle Young Poets of the Year Award 2017. This resource contains activities for KS4/5 to take place over the course of several lessons and develops students’ skills and confidence when dealing with unseen poetry as well as writing their own poems about their own family history.

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For more activities around prose poems, see Enshia Li’s Young Poets Network challenge

Making poetry with my mother

This lesson plan by Teacher Trailblazer Kate Brackley looks at Letitia Chan’s ‘Making Glutinous Dumplings with My Mother’, a winning poem in theFoyle Young Poets of the Year Award 2016.

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‘Dulce et Decorum est’ and intertextuality in Wilfred Owen

Peter Olive & Xavier Murray-Pollock use Wilfred Owen’s ‘Dulce et Decorum est’ as a springboard for discussion about the role and implications of allusion in poetry, also involving a discussion of Roman poet Horace's Odes.

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Yeats: An Irish Airman Foresees his Death

Jane Anderson explores a poem Yeats wrote in response to the death of a friend’s son during the First World War, as well as the poet's attitude to writing about war. At a glance: W.B. Yeats, war poetry, loss, literary heritage.

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W.B. Yeats - The Lake Isle of Innisfree

Jane Anderson explores one of W.B. Yeats best-loved poems, focussing on his use of sound and rhythm. At a glance: descriptive language, imagery, sound, performance.

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Teaching the Reading of Poetry

Mandy Coe provides tips and ideas for how to enthuse your class about reading poetry.  At a glance: reading, writing, literacy, confidence, sound.

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War poetry and WW2 poetry

This resource explores war poetry, Second World War poetry and longer poems, and includes an analysis of Timothy Corsellis' poem 'Dawn After the Raid'. This resource supports Young Poets Network's annual Timothy Corsellis Prize.

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Foyle Lesson Plan: Poetry, mythology and fairy tales

Katherine Whittington explores the reinvention of classic myths and legends in poetry using Foyle winner Isla Anderson's poem about Prometheus. At a glance: mythology, fairy tales, rhyme, structure, writing in another voice. 

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How do poets use language

Joseph Coelho uses his poem to help students understand how detailed use of language can open up new meanings and impact the poem.  At a glance: literary heritage poets, comparing texts, comprehension, figurative texts, friends and family.

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