Using Poetry in the classroom is not something you want to miss. There are various reasons to preach teaching poetry: First of all, believe it or not: kids and students love it. They love rhymes and the music inherent in poems. Besides, I think poetry lessons can make students love the language as they are encouraged to use it creatively. Moreover, it urges students to learn more vocabulary as they look for words that would rhyme with other words.
This can be also used to consolidate the recognition of the stress in words..
I used to avoid teaching poetry at first, to be honest, because I thought students will not be involved and they won't love it. Then, I read a few articles about teaching poetry and wanted to try it myself. The results were more than reassuring. My students are pre-intermediate learners so I avoided going into much detail: we talked only about rhymes. I asked some of my students to provide any words that they can think of in English. The others tried to find words that rhyme with them. Then we wrote down the words on small seperate cards. I asked my students to put them in groups: some words belong to the School group. Other words belong to the Food group,etc..Then I told my students that this is how poems are written basically. I asked them to write a simple poem about one of the groups using the rhyming words provided.. I did not talk about scansion or difficult stuff..I think this is what they need for the time being..The result was more than satisfying.. I also encouraged my students to be creative as to the presentation: I showed some examples i printed from the net.. Some wrote their poem on a piece of cloth..Others on a paper shaped as a green leaf,etc..
So, I am not going to miss any opportunity to use poems in my classes!
For great links on how to teach poetry:
NB: This entry was originally posted in http://www.teachingenglish.org.uk/
Here is the link : http://www.teachingenglish.org.uk/talk/polls/poetry-classroom#comment-423