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Day 5: Friday (Subscribers Only)

Passionate children’s author Jackie Hosking carefully crafts poetry to charm, intrigue, and surprise and challenge our readers. She talks about her favourite poetry techniques, and how kids can find the poet within them.

Vox Pop Video

Top 4 Tips

Download to print Jackie's Top 4 Tips!

Read Jackie's work in The School Magazine's 'Explore' library page.

Student Activities

Activity 1. Introduce Jackie Hosking to students by watching her Vox Pop Video.

Activity 2. Read out loud to the class a couple of Jackie’s poems so they understand the pace, energy, the sounds and patterns of the poems. A complete list of her poetry should be shown on the board from our website’s Explore page, or shared with the class for them to follow along as you read out loud. You can also use The School Magazine hard copy magazines at your school – we have listed the following below as a guide to help you locate them.

Poem Suggestions

Stage 2

  • It Is What It Is (Countdown, Issue 5 2020)
  • Breathe (Blast Off, Issue 1 2020)

Stage 3

  • A Not So Ordinary Afternoon (Orbit, Issue 2 2020 )
  • My Mother’s Hands (Touchdown, Issue 4 2020)

Activity 3. Direct students to focus on the recurring repetition of words and phrases in Jackie’s poetry. Tell them to re-read a poem slowly and identify these recurring phrases and repetition.


  • Breathe uses the recurring phrase ‘I could have used this breath to’.
  • My Mother’s Hands uses ‘My mother’s hands have’ and ‘My mother’s hands are’.
  • It Is What It Is uses ‘He’s not my dog / but he …’ and ‘like he’s mine / all mine’.

Activity 4. Discuss Jackie’s Top 3 Tips with your class. Ask students to create and write their own contemporary ten-line poem using Jackie’s Tips as a clever guide and her Infographic for Poetry. However, to create their ten-line poem students must only use the first person pronoun and the repetition of a phrase to start their poem similar to what Jackie has done in her poem Breathe. Once they have picked their recurring phrase, they then complete the line with a concrete detail. They shouldn’t be telling a story or explaining, or writing a paragraph – they just need to write one line with detail after their recurring phrase. They should complete this with the first nine lines.

Samples of Recurring Phrases

  • I remember …
  • I like to …
  • I wish …
  • I love …

But, for the tenth line, students should use a conjunction to create a surprise or twist at the end of the poem such as: yet, and, if, but.

More information

Jackie Hosking was born in Nigeria, lived in Cornwall and moved to Australia when she was ten. Jackie began writing poetry for children after attending a creative writing course at her local community house. She loves nature and animals and living on the Surf Coast has inspired many of her poems.

You can find out more about Jackie Hosking and her writing on her website.

Student Gallery

You can view our Student Gallery displaying the work of students who participated in the festival.

Schools are encouraged to contribute to the gallery display. Teachers should submit selected work their students have created as a result of our literary festival to the email [email protected] with the subject line ‘TSMLitFest–SCHOOL NAME—Student Gallery.

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