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Poetry seems to be something people either love or hate. Maybe it’s because in school we weren’t allowed to just enjoy it, we had to analyse it. I mostly didn’t get it. As an adult, unschooling my kids, I was willing to give it another try, but I wanted to focus on enjoyment. Reading whatever we wanted, finding things we loved. All four of my girls now love poetry and we have poetry teatime every week. I really think the beautiful books we have collected along the way have helped, and so I wanted to share some of the best poetry books for kids with you!
You can click on the titles below to read more about each book.
10 of The Best Poetry Books for Kids
This book is so beautiful! I’ve put it at the top of the list because when I grabbed the pile of books this one had the most sticky notes from the kids marking poems they love! A clear winner! Since we have four girls here, a book of poems by women and girls was called for. And it doesn’t disappoint. Take a look at a few of the pages…
This is Miss 14’s all-time favourite poem. She reads it at every poetry teatime we have.
“We have calcium in our bones,
Iron in our veins,
carbon in out souls,
and nitrogen in our brains.
93 percent stardust,
with souls made of flames,
we are all just stars
that have people names”
Many different types of poems. We just love this book!
The illustrations are wonderful and have inspired artwork here too. We adore this book.
So I chose these to be second on the list because I can tell how well-loved they are just by looking at them! Torn jackets, hot chocolate stains, these books are very well-used! We only have these two of Shel Silverstein’s poetry books but I would recommend any others without even seeing them. They are great! Tons of silly, funny poems which I think are a very great place to start out with poetry. These will get kids enjoying poems pretty quick.
Lots of funny little drawings to go along with the poems too.
These books are pulled out every poetry teatime and everyone is trying to get them first.
Another really beautiful collection with great variety. This is high up on the list of favourites. Lots of short poems, some long ones, all about nature (a favourite topic here). There’s a poem for every day of the year, but we don’t read them in order. It’s based on the Northern Hemisphere and so the seasons don’t line up for us. We don’t mind, we just pick randomly and read.
This is Miss 12’s favourite poem. A classic. I love the illustrations in this book too.
There are lots that are short and good for younger children to read. Lots of variety and I definitely recommend this one.
Poetry and emotional literacy! We really enjoy this book too. Each emotion is related to an animal. The girls like me to read the poem and they guess what animal will be the picture. I think they know them all by now but they still request I do this every time. I love how they have explained different feelings in this book.
Good for younger kids, but my older ones enjoy it still too. Actually, so do I. I can’t resist a rhyming poem.
More poetry about feelings! This is quite a new book here but already we are enjoying it and I wanted to include it because it looks like it’s going to get a lot of use.
More gorgeous illustrations. We love an illustrated poetry book here.
Look at the wonderful poems that have been chosen to explain complicated feelings. I love it! It’s sparking lots of discussion.
The sequel to ‘I Am The Seed That Grew The Tree’. Another beautiful addition, this time focused specifically on animals. We couldn’t resist getting this one too, since we loved the first one so much.
More beautiful illustrations and poetry. Again, one for every day of the year.
Funny poems are always a winner here, so we added this to our collection last Christmas. It’s got tons of poems to make you laugh.
Just a simple book, no pictures, lots of fun. Someone grabs it for every poetry teatime.
I couldn’t resist this one when I saw it. Of course we need some Emily Dickinson!
I like how at the bottom of the page there are definitions of unfamiliar words. Very helpful for kids!
Personal favourite, obviously.
Obviously we are very fond of nature poetry! This is another great collection. No illustrations inside (but look at that beautiful cover!), just poems divided into sections such as: sun shines, wind blows, water flows, earth spins.
These are the best poetry books for kids that we have found! I think introducing my kids to beautiful books, with a variety of poems, and making specific time in our week to enjoy them together has really helped them develop a love of poetry. I’d love to hear what your favourites are!