Catholic Homeschool Articles, Advice & Resources

In the Schoolroom – Winter Poetry


It is important that young people read and write poems and getting them started can be simple. Mary Ellen Barrett shows us how.

I love the snow,
it seems to glow,
it turned to rain,
what a shame.

This was my first published poem. It’s no Emily Dickinson, I know, but it was not too bad for a second-grade effort.

My elementary school literary journal included it, and my mother was very proud. Since then, I have published a few poems, but my talents lie mainly in other literary directions.

However, I love poetry, and it is important that young people read and write poems.

It is hard to call yourself well-educated without at least a passing knowledge of Shakespeare, Donne, Rossetti, Wordsworth, Keats, Shelley, Byron, Dickinson, and I could go on and on.

Having your children enjoy writing poetry can be as simple as having them look out the window. You might start them with something as basic as the weather and then give them a head start by providing some rhyming words.

  • Snow/glow
  • white/light
  • ice/nice
  • cold/hold
  • Rain/main/train
  • wind/pinned/skinned
  • tree/free/we
  • yard/guard/hard

Now, Add a Bit of Art

When they have written a few lines, then have them decorate the page. You could put together a literary journal for your homeschool group. Having the high school kids do it will look good on college applications. In the meantime, here is a wintry poem for you to read by Robert Louis Stevenson.

Late lies the wintry sun a-bed,
A frosty, fiery sleepy-head;
Blinks but an hour or two; and then,
A blood-red orange, sets again.

Before the stars have left the skies,
At morning in the dark I rise;
And shivering in my nakedness,
By the cold candle, bathe and dress.

Close by the jolly fire I sit
To warm my frozen bones a bit;
Or with a reindeer-sled, explore
The colder countries round the door.

When to go out, my nurse doth wrap
Me in my comforter and cap;
The cold wind burns my face, and blows
Its frosty pepper up my nose.

Black are my steps on silver sod;
Thick blows my frosty breath abroad;
And tree and house, and hill and lake,
Are frosted like a wedding-cake.

Robert Louis Stevenson

About Mary Ellen Barrett

Mother of seven children and two in heaven, Mary is wife to David and a lifelong New Yorker. She has homeschooled her children for eleven years using Seton and an enormous amount of books. She is a columnist for The Long Island Catholic and blogs here . Meet Mary Ellen.
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