Poems can be about anything – the objects in a messy drawer, a trail of ants climbing across the trampoline or your lost pink football boot – anything that matters to you.
Read last year's winning poems for further inspiration!
Use your senses – see, smell and hear the things in your poem. Try thinking of yourself as a camera – show the reader in words the pictures you can see.
Build your poem with details and objects. Here are some examples of things from previous year's winning poems: pipes waiting to trip you in the attic, the bus pass with the photo you don't want anyone to see, the squadron of attacking wasps or a little brother running around the garden like a wild bull.
Use your favourite words, words you like to say. Poems don't need to rhyme or have special flowery language. Enjoy all the different sounds you can make, be inventive. Surprise yourself.
Read your poem out loud and see how it sounds. Which bits do you like best? Have you used the same word twice? Can you find any better words? Is your poem too long? Is it in the right order? See if you can improve it.
The Poetry Toolkit was created by The Poetry Trust from more than a decade of running workshops for teachers. It offers foolproof recipes for teaching poetry in the classroom and is available free as a PDF.