Fiction | 29 July 2015Poetry for Kids: Werewolf Club Rules! Share article facebook twitter google pinterest “Performance poetry is a way of showing young people how to enjoy and access a pen and a page full of words.” –Joseph Coelho Werewolf Club Rules! by Joseph Coelho, illustrated by John O’Leary, and published by Frances Lincoln. Do not talk about Werewolf Club! You can howl about it But never talk. Do not walk to Werewolf Club! You can bound to it in moonlight But never walk. Find out the mysterious rules of Werewolf Club, how to look like a rainbow, what happens when puppies fall in love – and how to fold up your gran! This is an exciting debut poetry collection from Joseph Coehlo, a performance poet and playwright. This month Joe won the Centre for Literacy in Primary Education’s Poetry Award (CLiPPA) for his first collection of poems Werewolf Club Rules! This is the only award for Children’s Published Poetry and was a truly brilliant ceremony to attend at The National Theatre in London. Joseph Coelho is announced CLiPPA 2015 winner. Roger McGough, poet and chair of the judges, said Coelho is a “fresh new voice” in children’s poetry. “The book is a wonderful mixture of lyrical verse, personal experience, humour and insight. His delight in language, ability to tell everyday stories and use of comedy and pathos are what made this book our winner.” Roger McGough, a former poet laureate, and Tony Mitton, the 2014 winner, present Joseph Coelho with his award. Shadowing School performance on National Theatre stage of Joe’s poem ‘Miss Flotsam.’ Although Joe has clearly not failed in his magical ability with words, he says that allowing himself to fail has been his best realization on the road to success. Check out Joe’s guest blog on Playing by the Book ‘The Ultimate Writers’ Tip,’ linking to his brilliant poetry performances: The right to fail is every artists right and once you give yourself that gift you allow yourself to find the gold rather than quitting the dig because all you’re turning up is earth. The right to fail is particularly pertinent when working with young people I’ve seen amazing young writers in schools clam up out of fear of doing something “wrong” or berating themselves because what they have written is not “good enough” it took me a while to realise that these children were enacting the same fears and thought processes of adults! Society teaches us from a young age to judge ourselves and so we learn to clam up and deny ourselves the opportunity to become great artists. My poem ‘An A* from Miss Coo’ is on this very subject as the poems protagonist is constantly told “That can’t be right!/Do it again and do it right!” Watch Joe perform “If all the world were paper’ here, in a poem that imagines a world of almost infinite possibility. As well as writing poetry and appearing on television, Joe also writes, plays and runs courses aimed at encouraging the literary talents of schoolchildren. Joe’s efforts bring to light the beautiful power of poetry for kids. We can’t get enough of Joe, and hope you enjoy his words and performance poetry as much as we do! You can check out his website here. Buy from an Online Retailer In North America: In The UK: Share article facebook twitter google pinterest If you have any comments on this article please contact us or get in touch via social media.