On a magnificently hot summer’s day last week, Year 7 were led on a creative exploration of the Ted Hughes Poetry Trail in Stover Park by the English Department. The Stover Country Park created the trail in 2006 in celebration of Hughes’ poetry and long-standing links with Devon. Year 7 have been studying this past Poet Laureate’s nature themed work, exploring the wonderfully rich language and imagery that marked out his poetry for the honour.
Armed with booklet activities, Mrs Fenton and Mrs Sorenson accompanied one group clockwise around the lake, while Mr Forsyth and Ms Absalom took the second group anti-clockwise. Students stopped at selected poems inscribed on bronze and wood posts to read aloud and enjoy Hughes’ imagery. ‘The Harvest Moon’ was the favourite. Filled with stunning similes, students explained why they enjoyed them. ‘The Roe-deer’ was re-created in a cloze exercise, challenging children to fill in key missing words. They had to think carefully about how words are used to create meaning and effect. Back in the classroom, Year 7 are now writing their own poems in the style of Ted Hughes.
With the Park on our doorstep, families can visit any time and continue the excellent learning and exploration that has begun.