Poetry

English Year 1 Spring Poems on a Theme

Poems About the Senses

Using poems on the theme of the senses. Children learn parts by heart and respond, focusing on interesting adjectives. Identify and create similes. Write own poems.

Start with the core unit to introduce key texts. Then select from comprehension, SPAG and composition units.

Core
Unit 1 Core: Read and appreciate poems about the five senses
(suggested as 4 days)

You Will Need

Text
Sensational! Poems inspired by the five senses chosen by Roger McGough

Planning and Activities

Day 1 Teaching
Set up the classroom as a sensory rich space. Children enjoy the different sensory experiences. Read First Dog on the Moon. Identify the senses cited in the poem. Explain children will compose ideas to describe what the dog can hear or touch. Discuss ideas and model writing them.
Activity
Children work in mixed ability groups of three. Give each child a writing frame. They read each question and discuss potential answers. Help children add descriptive vocabulary to improve each of their ideas. They use correct punctuation to write their favourite sentence.

Day 2 Teaching
Teach children a sign to represent each sense. Read Five Haiku for the Senses. Notice each one describes a different sense. Read it again and challenge children to use the signs to identify the sense being described. Identify a favourite haiku and use because to provide a reason for the opinion.
Activity
Children work in mixed ability pairs. Give each pair a copy of Five Haiku for the Senses. Children read through the poem and use the discussion prompts to share their thoughts. They identify their favourite haiku and use because to provide a reason for their opinion.

Day 3 Teaching
Read A Sense-less Poem and My Uncommon Senses. Notice the poets have muddled up the senses. Locate funny examples. Explain children will compose a mixed up sentence about one of the senses. Orally compose suggestions. Use correct punctuation to write a range of ideas.
Activity
Children work in ability pairs. They select one of the five senses and orally compose a range of mixed-up funny sentences. Children select their favourite idea and orally rehearse it. They use correct punctuation to write their ideas.

Day 4 Teaching
Read Another Sensational Day. Notice the poet explains what they hear, smell, touch and taste during one day. Explain children will use one of their senses to describe part of today. Select one sense and a part of the day. Orally prepare ideas. Listen to suggestions and write them.
Activity
Children work in mixed ability pairs. They select a specific part of the day and one of the five senses. Children discuss suitable ideas. They select their favourite suggestions and orally combine them into a short verse. Each child uses correct punctuation to write their ideas.

SPAG
Unit 2 SPaG: Identifying and using correct sentence punctuation
(suggested as 3 days)

You Will Need

Essential texts
Sensational! Poems inspired by the five senses chosen by Roger McGough

Planning and Activities

Day 1 Teaching
Read What is…the Sun? Notice the title is a question and each verse answers the question. Stress each verse is a sentence that begins with a capital letter and ends with a full stop. Write the title: What is the Moon? Children use their senses to write a sentence to answer the question.
Activity
Children work in mixed ability groups of three. Give each child a slip of A3 paper. They use their senses to discuss creative descriptions of the moon. Children select their favourite idea and use correct punctuation to write the sentence.

Day 2 Teaching
Display and read Mud and Stretching. Highlight evocative vocabulary. Display In the garden. Notice the poet has written each verse as a question and an answer. Emphasise the punctuation marks associated with questions and statements. Children use the same pattern to write an extra verse to the poem.
Activity
Children work in ability pairs. Give each child a slip of A3 paper. Children compose a range of different questions and responses. They select their favourite ideas and use correct punctuation to write each sentence correctly.

Day 3 Teaching
Read Lost Rainbow. Summarise the poem. Consider what emotions it evokes. Display and read a selection of questions about the poem. Children work in mixed ability pairs to answer a question. Listen to ideas and model using correct punctuation to write a response.
Activity
Children work in ability pairs. Give each child a copy of the poem and the discussion prompts. They re-read the poem and use the questions to facilitate a discussion about it. Each child selects three questions and orally prepares a response to each. They use correct punctuation to write their ideas.

Composition
Unit 3 Composition: Express thoughts and feelings from a personal viewpoint
(suggested as 4 days)

You Will Need

Text
Sensational! Poems inspired by the five senses chosen by Roger McGough
They All Saw a Cat by Brendan Wenzel

Websites
Reading of They All Saw A Cat from YouTube.com

Planning and Activities

Day 1 Teaching
Display the front cover of They All Saw a Cat. Share thoughts/ideas about cats. Notice that different people have different opinions. Read the beginning of the book. Notice the cat is changing shape/appearance to reflect how characters view it. Consider how different creatures sense the cat.
Activity
Children work in mixed ability groups of three. Give each group cut out pictures of different creatures. Children take turns to select a creature and explain how it would sense the cat. Help children to use because to provide a reason for their idea.

Day 2 Teaching
Read My Hands. Identify how the poet uses their hands. Generate additional ideas. Read Mark’s Fingers. Identify activities that are special. Children work in mixed ability pairs to identify special ways they use their hands/fingers. Listen to suggestions. Select five different ideas and model writing them as notes.
Activity
Children work in ability pairs. Give each child an outline of a hand. They discuss special ways they use their hands/fingers. Children select five of the best ideas and use notes to write their ideas inside the hand outline.

Day 3 Teaching
Read Unexplained Things About My Dad. Notice the poet has used their five senses to organise their ideas. Explain the poem describes what a child thinks about their dad. Discuss how other people may know and understand him.
Activity
Children work independently. They select someone special to them and use their senses to think about them carefully. Remind children they can focus on one of their senses, rather than all five. Children select their best ideas and use correct punctuation to write them.

Day 4 Teaching
Watch They All Saw a Cat. Remind children that each character views the cat differently. Explain that children will think carefully about how different creatures sense people. Identify familiar animals. Consider how that animal senses a person. Use correct punctuation to write the idea/s as a sentence.
Activity
Children work in mixed ability pairs. Give each child a writing frame. They identify a range of familiar creatures and consider how that animal senses them. Children select their favourite idea/s and use correct punctuation to write them.

SPAG
Unit 4 SPaG: Use adjectives and recognise the effect of the prefix -un
(suggested as 3 days)

You Will Need

Desirable Texts:
Sensational! Poems inspired by the five senses chosen by Roger McGough
The Works: Every poem you will ever need at school chosen by Paul Cookson

Planning and Activities

Day 1 Teaching
Display and read That’s What I like. Notice the poet has used their senses to organise the poem. Write: carrots, kittens and music. Identify how the poet has described them. Explain that words that give readers information about objects are called adjectives.
Activity
Children work in mixed ability pairs. Give each pair a collection of adjectives and a sorting table. Children read each word and decide which sense they describe. They sort each word into the correct column.

Day 2 Teaching
Read Sounds Like Magic. Explain that children will explore words and their opposites. Read the final verse and write: empty and loud. Discuss the opposite of each word. Repeat with: kind, tidy and happy. Notice the prefix un- is added to signify the opposite of each word.
Activity
Children work in mixed ability groups of three. Give each group a word poster. Children read each word and discuss their meaning. They explore how using the prefix un- changes the meaning of each word. Children select five words and write them.

Day 3 Teaching
Display and read What is Pink? Notice the poem is written with a question and answer format. Explain children will write a similar poem, using words with the prefix un-. Display a selection of questions. Orally prepare answers to each question. Use correct punctuation to write a response.
Activity
Children work independently. Give each child a writing frame. Children read each question and select at least three they would like to answer. They orally prepare and rehearse a suitable response to each question. Children use correct punctuation to write their idea.

Day 4 Teaching
Display and read As Tasty as a Pie. Highlight the adjectives. Notice the first two lines of each verse are a simile. Display and read a selection of unfinished similes. Say children will use their senses to compose different similes. Children work in pairs to discuss how to finish each simile.
Activity
Children work in ability pairs. Give each child a writing frame. They read each unfinished simile and discuss different ways to complete the sentence. Children use correct punctuation to complete each simile.

Composition
Unit 5 Composition: Perform and write poetry, and review familiar poems
(suggested as 4 days)

You Will Need

Text
Sensational! Poems inspired by the five senses chosen by Roger McGough

Planning and Activities

Day 1 Teaching
Explain children will listen to a poem that describes some amazing sights. Expressively read The Secret Song. Emphasise each question and answer. Children choose one verse from the poem to learn and perform. Discuss strategies for an effective performance. Select one verse and demonstrate using these strategies.
Activity
Children work in mixed ability groups. Group children based on their favourite verse. Give each group a copy of their favourite verse. Children use the strategies from the Input to rehearse reading the verse aloud.

Day 2 Teaching
Read Noise. Discuss the poem. Explain that children will write their own descriptions of familiar or unusual noises. Remind children to include descriptive vocabulary. Children orally prepare their ideas. Listen to suggestion. Write ideas as correctly punctuated sentences.
Activity
Children work in ability pairs. Give each child a slip of A3 paper. Children discuss and describe familiar or unusual sounds. Each child will select their favourite idea and orally rehearse the sentence/s. Children use correct punctuation to write their idea.

Day 3 Teaching
Read Life is a Bucket Band and My Brother. Look for similarities and differences. Explain children will write a short, non-rhyming poem about a noisy person. Discuss and prepare suitable ideas. Use neat handwriting and correct punctuation to write ideas.
Activity
Children work independently. Give each child a line guide. Children select a subject for their poem. They orally explore ideas to describe the sounds that person does or could make. Children select their favourite ideas and rehearse them. They use correct punctuation to write their ideas underneath each other.

Day 4 Teaching
Display and read all of the poems from Unit 5. Children identify their favourite poem and use because to explain the opinion. Select a favourite a poem and explain why you chose to review it. Display the poetry review template. Discuss and complete each section.
Activity
Children work independently. Give each child a poetry review template. They identify their favourite poem and orally prepare a response to each section of the poetry review template. Children select their best ideas to complete each section.