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How Can I Help My Child Appreciate Poetry?

Poetry can often be hard for kids to understand. The language may be different from normal everyday speech. Here are some ways to get your child excited about poetry:

Tip #1: Read poetry aloud

How Can I Help My Child Appreciate Poetry?

Children naturally love the sound and rhythm of words. That's why lullabies and nursery rhymes are some of the first things parents read to their children.

Make poetry a part of your child’s everyday life by reading them short poems throughout the day and before bedtime. Use lots of expression in your voice and have fun with unusual sounds. 

Don't worry too much about your child understanding every word. It's important to first build enjoyment for poetry and comprehension skills will naturally develop.

Tip #2: Choose enjoyable poems

Find poems that your child will like. There are many books with poems that are funny, silly or playful. Others have interesting stories or characters that your child can relate to. Try to choose poems that use modern language if your child gets confused by poems written a long time ago.

Tip #3: Get your child to memorise and perform poems

A great way for children to appreciate the sounds of poetry is to feel them in their bodies. Get your child to memorise a short poem and perform it for friends, family or even their toys! They’ll learn to notice rhymes and patterns of sounds through first-hand experience.

Tip #4: Use music and song

Make poetry fun by studying the words of your child's favourite songs or lullabies. Help them notice poetry techniques such as rhymes or repeated sounds. Another great idea is to turn poems into songs. Make poetry fun and enjoyable!

Book Recommendations

  • By Dr. Seuss: The Cat in the Hat; Green Eggs and Ham; One Fish Two Fish; and many more!
  • The Cat on the Mat is Flat by Andy Griffiths
  • Where the Sidewalk Ends by Shel Silverstein
  • Now We Are Six by A. A. Milne
  • Revolting Rhymes by Roald Dahl
  • And many more in your local library!

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