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POETRY PIECES

cowHow Would You Feel If a Cow Ate You?

How would you feel if a cow ate you?
Caught you and bopped you,
And chopped you in two,
Fried you or broiled you or put you in a stew
With carrots, potatoes and an onion or two?

So sometimes at dinner when you’re starting to chew,
Put down your steak and ponder this through,
How would you feel if a cow ate you?

by Pete Traynor

Key Stage 1 Poetry Activities:
How Would You Feel If a Cow Ate You?

Activity 1
Learn the poem and recite it, dramatising it with actions. This could be performed at a school assembly.

Activity 2 - Rhyming words.
• What are the words that rhyme?
• Can you think of one or more words that rhyme with ‘you’ that could be used?
• Add an extra line or more to the poem using your chosen rhyming words.


Take One Home For The Kiddies

On shallow straw, in shadeless glass,
Huddled by empty bowls, they sleep:
No dark, no dam, no earth, nor grass -
Mam, get us one of them to keep.

Living toys are something novel,
But it soon wears off somehow.
Fetch the shoebox, fetch the shovel -
Mam, we’re playing funerals now.

by Philip Larkin

Key Stage 2 Poetry Activities:
Take One Home For The Kiddies

Activity 1
Read the poem carefully and make a list of questions about the poem then discuss the answers. Possible questions might include:

• What were on shallow straw?
• Where were they?
• What is a dam?
• What is the meaning of the shoebox and the shovel?

Activity 2 - Rhyming words.
Write a poem about keeping a companion animal, with a happy ending. You will need to decide the kind of companion animal and how you would look after it properly.


The Fly

flyLittle Fly,
Thy summer’s play
My thoughtless hand
Has brush’d away.

Am not I
A fly like thee?
Or art not thou
A man like me?

For I dance,
And drink and sing,
Till some blind hand
Shall brush my wing.

If thought is life
And strength and breath;
And the want of thought is death;

Then am I
A happy fly,
If I live
Or if I die.

by William Blake

Key Stage 2 Poetry Activities:
The Fly

Activity 1
Brainstorm the meaning of the poem in your group. Make a list of the ideas. Ten ideas could be a possible target. Now by voting or discussion, prioritise the ideas. Which are the most important?

Activity 2 - Rhyming words.
Rewrite the poem as The Fish or The Worm, changing the contents to match the characteristics of that creature. Read your poems to the class or display the poems in a class book.

TEACHER'S NOTES
These poems could also be used as a stimulus for responses or reflection in assembly. They could be linked to the theme of the Golden Rule or in conjunction with one of the stories in this handbook.


Share The World - People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) Foundation - PO Box 36678, London SE1 1YE - 020 7357 9229, ext 263