I can’t imagine my childhood without Janet and Allan Ahlberg. Two of my favourite books were Please Mrs Butler and Heard it in the Playground (affiliate links), both collections of poems based around being at school.
I created a worksheet based on the title poem from Please Mrs Butler and the recording Allan Ahlberg made of it on The Children’s Poetry Archive.
I used it with pre-intermediate students as part of our ongoing thread of listening and pronunciation practice. We listened to the numbers in the introduction four or five times, and they managed to get them all. We finished the 90-minute lesson with the students repeating the poem after me, then performing it together. This was the final result:
The poem has since served as a warmer in later lessons. For homework, I asked them to watch a group of children performing the title poem from the other book, Heard it in the Playground.
What poems do you like using in class?