Want to travel in a rocket? Search for a grumpy dragon? Make your very own monster? Visit a higgledy-piggledy farm? Well, hop into Zim Zam Zoom – for fun and adventures galore! Colours, animals, space, music, fairytale fireworks…! Here is a collection of poems especially written for performance.

Astrid has always loved the stars and space. “I want to be an astronaut!” she says. While Mama is away, Papa and Astrid have fun acting out the challenges an astronaut faces on a space mission – eating food from a tube, doing science experiments, living and sleeping in near-zero gravity. Astrid can do it all! Then it’s time to meet Mama at the airbase. But where has Mama been?

Immi finds a beautiful wooden bird at the end of her fishing line, and every day after that she discovers something new, until her igloo is the brightest thing in the land. But where are these mysterious gifts coming from, and who is sending them? Hope and friendship echo across continents in this beautiful, timeless tale.

Ten-year-old Isla has moved from Edinburgh to the Orkney Islands with her parents, to start a new life after the death of Isla’s beloved young brother.

Many strands are woven into this deceptively simple story and Jane Ray’s illustrations capture the beauty of the island landscape and integrate it perfectly with the atmosphere and rich texture of the storytelling

He’s not scared of nothing.

Nobody. Never. Nah.

Which means that he is.

Tough kid. Not tough enough.

I know – I once met his dad.

They’re all here… every kid in the class. The pushy one, the shy one. The whizz kid and the daydreamer. The kid who runs in his wheelchair. The tough kid, the poet. And not forgetting the class hamster.

“At last all were gathered inside the ark. It heaved with animals, large and small. Mrs Noah wore a brand-new coat, with a hood and a cape – and very deep pockets. Lots of pockets.”

 

When Mr Noah builds the ark, he makes two lists – one for all the animals who will come on board and one for those troublesome creatures he will leave behind. Meanwhile, Mrs Noah gets out her sewing machine and makes a coat with very deep pockets. Lots of pockets.

A disappearing father and a Mermaid-Queen mother; statues that sing for flesh and blood; bullies who kick you under the table; perfect red trainers – and the things that lurk in the library….

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Award-winning poet Joseph Coelho’s astonishing new collection is a powerful and moving poetic narrative about growing up in the city.

Rising Stars is a showcase of – and a platform for – some of the most brilliant emerging young poets writing today. We can’t pretend to have discovered them; with the help of Joelle Taylor, poet and director of SLAMbassadors UK, Pop Up and Otter-Barry Books tapped into the UK’s spoken word community, where we wanted to find writer-performers interested in making the journey into poetry for young readers. We most certainly found what we were looking for!

CLiPPA award-winning poet Kate Wakeling says:

“A vibrant anthology of fresh new voices. Here are five poets unafraid to tackle the big themes, each writing with wit, poise, power and heart.”

 

 

This collaboration is supported by Arts Council England’s Grants for the Arts programme.

Black and white illustrations are by final year students from Birmingham City University: Riya Chowdhury, Elanor Chuah & Joe Manners.

Find classroom resources for Rising Stars here!

 

Pattan has an amazing pumpkin… it grows BIGGER than the goats, BIGGER than the elephants, until it is as TALL as the mountains.

 

But can Pattan’s pumpkin save his family and all the animals when the storm-clouds burst and the waters rise?