National Literacy Trust and RSPB launch new poetry and nature resource for Earth Day 2022

To celebrate Earth Day, the National Literacy Trust and the RSPB have come together to create a resource pack for schools to inspire writing through nature.

The unique poetry and nature resource pack is available nationally, yet also forms part of the Young Poets project from the National Literacy Trust, which aims to improve pupils’ enjoyment of writing, their motivation to write and their attitudes to poetry.

It also encompasses the RSPB Wild Challenge, an award scheme encapsulating a suite of specially-developed activities to support schools to engage children with nature and provide practical learning opportunities.

Engaging students in poetry helps to promote enjoyment of writing, inspiring feelings of creativity and provides an outlet for self-expression – Sean Cumming, National Literacy Trust

The creative activities developed by the National Literacy Trust and the RSPB will support and guide teachers to inspire their pupils to write and perform poetry through outdoor exploration of nature. The resource includes a series of lesson plans, encouraging students to be inquisitive about the natural world and provide them with meaningful experiences of the outdoors, while also meeting national curriculum requirements for writing.

This resource has been written with school grounds in mind, and the poetry-based lesson plans created by the National Literacy Trust enable pupils to draw on their sensory experiences to describe nature’s beauty, empathize with wildlife to write and perform poetry.

These activities build on the five pathways to nature connection – senses, emotion, beauty, meaning and compassion – and promote creativity and literacy skills through a poetic use of language.

Sean Cumming, Young Writers Project Manager at the National Literacy Trust, said: “We are delighted to offer our new poetry and nature resource to schools, created in collaboration with the RSPB. Engaging students in poetry helps to promote enjoyment of writing, inspiring feelings of creativity and provides an outlet for self-expression.

“As poets and writers have always looked to nature as a source of inspiration, we are confident that the focus on nature in the resource pack and the opportunities it provides for classes to explore the outdoors will deepen students’ knowledge and appreciation of nature and improve mental well-being.”

Suzanne Welch, RSPB UK Education & Families Manager, said: “We are very proud to be working with the National Literacy Trust on this inspirational resource. It is exciting to be part of something that joins creativity and the environment together in a powerful way.

“Using nature as stimulation for writing allows children to reflect on what they experience in nature so they can hold on to those moments and use them as inspiration and establish strong connections to wildlife and community. We hope that teachers and children across the country enjoy these activities and explore the great outdoors with all their new skills!”

To access the resources, please visit: https://literacytrust.org.uk/resources/writing-from-nature-a-poetry-resource/

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