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Here is our offering for National Poetry Day:

There was a young Roamer from Folkestone
Who wrote An' drew in Motion
But how to make her poems rhyme
Or get her words to scan a line
She really had no notion.

So the following activities are aimed at getting our Roamer rhyming and scanning. Both the activities could, of course, be done without a Roamer. The advantage of using Roamer is that you add in more of the curriculum to the activity, ie. you are satisfying some of your numeracy objectives within your literacy hour and in a crowded curriculum that has to be a bonus.

Infant activity

Divide a large circle (60cm diameter) into 12 segments (30º) or 18 segments (20º) depending on age of pupil.

In each section write a regular rhyming word. Moon, log, fall etc.

Write loads of words that rhyme with them on cards placed face down.
Place an arrow on Roamer pointing to the outside.
You may wish to set the Roamer unit of turn to 20º or 30º. To do this you press turn [20/30] GO
Or you may wish children to count in 20s or 30s - you know the ability level of your children.

Then they just turn over a card and program Roamer to point to its rhyme. They then place the rhyming word next to the word on the circle so that you end up with a pile of words that rhyme.

For older children you could put the word "orange" in one segment (no rhyming words) and could also put in words that look like they rhyme but actually don't eg. Sew and few.

Junior Activity

On a grid of floor mats place nouns that the pupils have selected. Each pupil throws a dice and makes Roamer move the appropriate number of squares. They then "collect" that word. They can choose which way they want to go so they can have a limited choice in the word that Roamer lands on. They have to collect five words in this manner and then see if they can construct a poem using these words within it.

You could use the same activity for adjectives.

We'd love to see any of the resulting poems.

If you have any suggestions for Topical Topics that you would like to see ideas for or, even better, have a Topical Topic that has worked well with your class and you could share with other teachers please do contact us.

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