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St Gilbert's R.C.

Primary School

Inspired by St. Gilbert, as God's family, we are growing strong in love and faith, becoming the best we can be.

Week 1 (Poetry)

Dark Poetry

This week we will look at some Shakespeare and a new poetry book called The Lost Spells.


Even though Halloween has passed I thought it would be a shame not to look at a well known piece of Shakespeare from the play Macbeth and see if we can create our own witches brew!

Then I want to share a brand new book of poetry called The Lost Spells by Robert Macfarlane and an amazing artist called Jackie Morris. We will use a poem about a fox to create our own Lost Spell!

Tuesday 3rd November - Witches Brew

Poetry was written to be performed and today we are going to practice our reading aloud voices by performing in groups. From the lines of Shakespeare's Macbeth above, we will rehearse a couple of lines by heart and practice performing them in front of each other. 

We will look at how our voices need to be loud, clear and have intonation to express the meaning of the poem.

Wednesday 4th November - Writing our own Witches Brew

Using the lines from Shakespeare's Macbeth above we will plan and write our own Witches Brew poem.


We will use rhyming couplets like there are in the Shakespeare play (at the end of each two lines the words rhyme in pairs e.g. snake and bake, frog and dog).


Take a look at some examples written by other children in the slideshow above.


Using the cauldron image - plan some ideas to go into your Witches Brew - try to get pairs of things that rhyme and try to extend their descriptions.


Thursday 5th November - The Lost Spells and the Red Fox

Read the introduction to The Lost Spells poetry book above and consider the following questions:

Is there anything you don’t understand about the introduction?

What do you like about the introduction?

Why do spells need to be spoken aloud?

What words can you identify that might also mean ‘spell’?
What do you think ‘a fox might witch into your mind’ means?

Which word is the verb here? Why has the writer done this?

What do you think when you associate witch with fox?

What does ‘Loss is the tune of our age’ mean?

Write your thoughts on the above questions around the image and introduction text.

Looking at the image above - thought-shower as many words as you can think of that might come under the following headings:


colour     smell    sound   texture   movement


You could also think of your own headings too.

Challenge yourself to then write a sentence or two about the image, using some of the words you have written down.

Read the first two verses of the Red Fox poem above.


Then write down your answers to these questions:


What do you notice about the line 'shadow that slips through a hole in the hedge'?


What does 'brush' mean here?


What scene do you picture in your mind's eye when you hear, 'My two green eyes in your headlights'?


Is it rural or urban?


What do you like about the poem? (or not like?)

Friday 6th November - writing our own Lost Spell poem

Using your thought-shower words from yesterday it's now time to write your own poem about a Red Fox.


Use the lines from the poem to guide your verses:


First verse about: How do you see me?


Second verse about: When do you hear me?


Think about describing what your fox looks like and what it sounds like.


To challenge yourself you could write more verses using the headings from the other verses in the poem: Where do you find me? What do you call me? Why do you need me?


When you have written your poem, practice reading out loud and try to memorise it so that when you are reading aloud you can concentrate more on your voice than remembering the words!


Have fun!

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