How do you think poetry is best taught in schools?

I think it's best taught by, ideally, people who love poetry. You can't teach poetry in a sort of detached way or a clinical way without spoiling something that's basic to the poetry. Of course a very important thing, which people are much better about nowadays, is getting the children to write themselves and there are various competitions for children as well as just doing it in terms of the school magazine. And the seven to elevens have a wonderful brightness and spontaneity which you probably won't catch again so it's important to get them to write when they're that age. And of course the twelves to eighteens have all the excitement of widening experience - all the possibilities are opening up to them. So, I think, write and be surrounded by people who are keen on poetry is the thing.


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