Literacy/PE: Football fever!

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Kick-start World Cup celebrations with Paul Cookson’s performance poetry ideas


The World Cup is upon us, so how do you capture your class’ imagination and attention when they’d rather be on the pitch? Use performance poetry to get them thinking about something they enjoy and creating something educational, too!

You can make a performance poem out of a few words. They don’t have to make sense, they don’t have to tell a story, it’s not what they look like – it’s what they sound like when they are read out loud.

It is based on sounds, rhythms, repetition, actions, sound effects, repetition, beat, expression and repetition. I guarantee that if you start to say words aloud in a call-and response way with your class, you will soon get the feel of the words – you and they will both know what sounds right and what doesn’t, what fits and what needs changing – they will start talking about beats and rhythms, and their confi dence will grow in no time.

Below is an activity idea to create a class performance poem based on the World Cup. However, the format to creating such a poem isn’t subject specific and will work with other sports and subjects.

Kick off!

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