Picture the Poet: Ian McMillan

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Pupils from across Lincolnshire are being given the chance to meet the poets featured in the National Portrait Gallery’s touring ‘Picture the Poet’ exhibition and to have a go at creating their own poetry with some expert guidance. Monks Abbey Primary School were among those invited to the Usher Gallery in Lincoln to take part in an interactive poetry workshop run by poet Ian McMillan.

During the workshop Ian told the pupils some funny stories on lots of different topics including dinner ladies and creaky floorboards, and he used these stories to make rhymes and poems.

Click to listen to Ian’s poem about dinner ladies, performed with a little help from Monks Abbey:

Then everyone worked together to write a poem that was inspired by the gallery and performed these with different actions, like making the floor creak.

Talking about writing poetry from a young age, Ian told us, “I was lucky enough to go to a school that was very keen on poetry, and in every lesson we’d do a poem, so I had a great start. That’s why it’s so nice to work here with a class of people who are very keen on poetry because I think poetry is a fantastic thing, as we’ve proved today.”

Listen to Hannah and Jamila’s interview with Ian to find out more:




6 Responses to Picture the Poet: Ian McMillan

  1. Erin May 20, 2015 at 9:08 pm

    Hah! I loved reading this and you have captured the day so well in print. It was an inspiring experience and the recordings are just great – nicely done!

  2. Grace May 21, 2015 at 12:10 pm

    Great interview again! I loved hearing Ian talk about the sound of poems being so important. Alfred Tennyson, from Lincolnshire, absolutely adored the sound and rhythm of words. He liked creating moods with them, choosing lazy sounding ones. sad ones or big, bright ones. Hope to see some of you soon – maybe after half-term.

  3. Matt May 22, 2015 at 10:00 am

    Great interview about the workshops at the Picture the Poet exhibition! I really enjoyed listening to Ian McMillan and hearing his poetry tips!

  4. Laura May 22, 2015 at 3:25 pm

    Really interesting to read about the workshop, I loved hearing Ian McMillan being interviewed and about how he approaches working in different places. Great poem too!

  5. ashley May 26, 2015 at 12:41 pm

    Great interviews! Looks like you had loads of fun and so much more in depth than some things coming from the Echo, well done 🙂

  6. Paul Jenkins May 27, 2015 at 5:20 pm

    It was an amazing day! Monks Abbey worked really well with Ian and entertained us all with their fantastic stories and poems inspired by the pictures in the gallery.

    A massive well done to all involved!