Hints and Tips for Running a Poetry Writing Session

Poetry gives people the opportunity to express emotion and explore feelings, and is a really rewarding way to spend time either one-on-one or in a small group. Your role is to gently help the process along and keep it fun and enjoyable.

You’ll need a large piece of paper or whiteboard to write down words and poems – as well as some willing participants! Don’t worry about rhyme, rhythm, spelling or punctuation – there are no rules and no right or wrong.

Below are some ideas and suggestions for working with poems and words.

  • Collect together some objects and images relating to the theme of childhood and get residents talking about their thoughts and experiences. Write down any interesting phrases, words or memories that come up and then work together to build a poem around them.
  • Your poems could rhyme, be a long list of connected words or you could follow the form of a cinquain poem. This is a poem consisting of just five lines: the first being a noun, the second line two words that describe the subject and the third is three associated verbs, or doing words. Line four states what it means to us personally, and the last line is one more noun or even the same one again. The simple steps can really help to get words flowing and get you started.

Here’s an example to show you how easy it can be!


Long, long

Playing, growing, waiting

Sisters and friendships


  • Lastly, remember to give the poem a title, record who wrote it and provide everyone with a copy, before entering the competition at online here.