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Archbishop Cranmer Church of England Academy, Aslockton, pupils take part in poetry competition



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Young orators recited poetry they had learned off by heart in front of their classmates as part of a contest.

Having looked for a poetry competition and found many geared towards secondary schools only, Archbishop Cranmer Church of England Academy, Aslockton, launched its own in 2017. It is called Off By Heart Poetry — a recital competition.

The school’s head, Melanie Stevens, said: “It is a fantastic opportunity for the children in all year groups to develop independence and confidence while learning a whole range of poems in different ways.

Archbishop Cranmer poetry recital competition winners: Isabel (y1) Henry (y2) Isla (y3) Lewis (y6). (55883832)
Archbishop Cranmer poetry recital competition winners: Isabel (y1) Henry (y2) Isla (y3) Lewis (y6). (55883832)

"It has proven health benefits and we believe a challenge which is both serious and fun — as the phrase learning by heart implies, it makes it precious.”

All the pupils learned one poem.

They had six weeks to learn their chosen piece at home and then recited them in their respective classes.

Two winning entries from each year group went through to the grand final.

Mrs Stevens said, “Children could be as creative as they liked to bring their poems alive by using props, drama — anything went.

"Learning by heart is a wonderful thing. Especially wonderful when it comes to remember poems which have the delightful advantage of being organised in ways, involving rhythm and rhyme which make learning them easy.”

A judge and governor, the former Under Sheriff in Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire, Richard Bullock, recited The Lion And Albert from memory to the delight of the assembled children.



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