OK, so this looks like a spindly, bare, whippersnapper of a tree …
… but pupils at two York schools have been imagining what it will grow into, and how they will enjoy the fruit it will bear in the future. And they have been doing so through poetry.
The ‘Poetree’ project was dreamt up and delivered by Vikki Pendry of York Edible Schools (Y.E.S. – part of Edible York) and me. Two local schools were offered two apple trees each (courtesy of Y.E.S.), and an accompanying poetry workshop from me.
Planting apple trees in February is a splendidly muddy business, but fortunately the children had been primed to bring wellies that day, so much stomping could be enjoyed by all.
Less muddy were our poetry workshops, in which the children learned and performed a poem I had written specially for them all about the wildlife the apple trees would support as they matured.
Then the children created their own class poem about what the trees and their fruit would mean to them.
It was great to see such purposeful and imaginative learning going on at these two schools. Claire Hopkinson, Form 3 teacher at Applefields, told us afterwards:
‘We loved having you to visit us and the pupils really did have a great deal of fun and enjoyment. They performed the poems in assembly so everyone in school has benefitted from your workshop.’
The Applefields pupils subsequently sent us an absolutely beautiful ‘Thank You’ pack. Just take a look at this:
Aren’t they fabulous? Brought a tear to my eye …
Vikki and I hope the apple trees will leave a tasty legacy for all these children for years to come.
This was one of a range of food-related poetry events that I have put on. If you fancy some poetree or other food-related poetry at your school, then just get in touch. (Though I have to tell you, the current funding for the apple trees has been used up now!)