Poetry should be ageless but, should have a target audience in mind. Your voice has to appeal to the child of today.
Poems for children can be divided into three age ranges: 5+, 9+ and YA.
- A-Z: The best children’s poetry from Agard to Zephaniah compiled by Michael Rosen
- Please Mrs Butler by Allan Ahlberg
- The Day I Fell Down the Toilet and Other Poems by Steve Turner and David Mostyn
The Poetry Society is an excellent resource for poets: www.poetrysociety.org.uk
If you want to target you poetry in an event remember National Poetry Day is the 4th October.
There are often opportunities for aspiring poets for children in anthologies and you can see your name alongside big names such as:
- Michael Rosen,
- Carol Anne Duffy,
- John Agard,
- Pie Corbett,
- Paul Cookson,
- Roger McGough
If want to write poetry for children go to local bookshop and browse their most recently published anthologies. See who published them. Write to them and say interested in submitting to the next anthology and could they put you on their list. Include a selection of poems as example of your style and voice. Try and include a poem that would have been appropriate for their latest anthology as a similar theme.
Poems can be timeless and you are often able to re-use them. My poem The Fairground is in the Teaching ICT with Story and has previously been featured in a teacher resource called ‘Here comes the Fair’ published by Ahmed Iqbal Ullah Education Trust, in conjunction with the University of Manchester and Manchester City council and is now part of an anthology of poems for speech and drama teachers, Poetry for Performance published by The Playing Space.