God is a Poet – Introducing Poetry to High School Homeschool Students

I was asking my homeschool high school group-class students if they enjoyed poetry. Most of the class hastily asserted, “NO”.

Then I asked if they had studied any poetry. Most answered a bit hesitant, “Not much.”

Poetry High School Homeschool

Poetry High School Homeschool

Well, that was exciting because I got to open their eyes to the fact that they had missed studying poetry by the most famous poet ever:

God

That’s right. God himself was a poet. Read the Psalms. All the Psalms are poetry. We could just as well call that book: “Poems”.

Look at the words that God gave the prophets to say. Often it was in poetic form (the entire book of Nahum is poetic in style, for instance).

God is not the only poet from ancient times. In those old days, people wrote their stories in poetic style. The original forms of many works were poetry, including: Beowulf, Greek epics such as Homer’s Iliad, and the Epic of Gilgamesh 

In times not too long past, writing poetry and reading poetry was household entertainment. Take for instance, Jane Austen’s Sense and Sensibility. The Dashwood family’s evening amusement centered around reading poetry to each other. (In fact, the ability to read poetry in a passionate manner was the way John Dashwood stole Marianne’s heart.) 

God thinks and expresses himself in poetic ways.

Great writers of former days expressed themselves in poetry. If our homeschooling high schoolers have no sense of poetry, if they only read and write prose, they are going to miss out on part of the mind of God and important connections to our cultural past and present.

This year our local homeschool high school group-class students are working through British Poetry 

and TS Eliot’s Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats

Poetry High School Homeschool

They will be learning to create their own basic poetry, too. 

The 7 Sisters Study Guides they will use contain no-busywork, are simple enough for beginners to understand and enjoy AND hopefully will give the soul of poetry to the kids so they can understand. I want to give them a good introduction to Poetry. 

Are your homeschooling high schoolers reading and writing poetry, too?

 

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Poetry High School Homeschool

Vicki Tillman

Blogger, curriculum developer at 7SistersHomeschool.com, counselor, life and career coach, SYMBIS guide, speaker, prayer person. 20+year veteran homeschool mom.

3 Replies to “God is a Poet – Introducing Poetry to High School Homeschool Students”

  1. I love using poetry with high school students – despite their determination to hate it, I’ve never had a class that was disengaged through a reading of a well-selected poem. I look forward to reading what you have to say about poetry writing, as I’ve been too nervous to contemplate teaching the how-to of poetry as of yet. I’ve only had to focus on how to analyse it (being a History teacher sneakily incorporating it into my lessons, rather than a full time English teacher). There’s nothing like it to capture kids’ imagination… I often come back to Wilfred Owen’s poems, especially ‘Mental Case’ and ‘Dulce et Decorum est’, when I teach units on WWI, and hardly ever have I had a class that didn’t go completely silent in awe at the scene he portrays. Poets are amazing creatures. I’m currently focused on Robert Frost on my blog http://www.learningandwriting.com.

    • Elissa,
      I LOVE Wilfred Owens. You are right: Poetry is a powerful way to connect history students with the culture, wonders and problems of a time period. When I teach our homeschool history classes I always make the teens memorize a poem from that time period- like Dulce et Decorum est Or In Flanders Fields for WWI.

      When I teach poetry in English I always hook them with YouTube readings of all kinds of poetry by famous people that they already like. I have a collection of those on my Pinterest poetry board: https://www.pinterest.com/vickitillman/poetry/

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