Poetry Day Ireland 2016 Lesson Plans: Primary (Senior)

Watch poet Enda Wyley read and discuss her poem 'Bully', then follow the lesson plan below. Ideal for 3rd-6th classes.


by Enda Wyley

You are a sharp pencil
in my side during every class,
a robber of all the homework I do,
a smiling, sweet face for the teacher
but a hissing, green-eyed demon to me.

You are cruel glass in the playground,
a towering wall that blocks my way home.
You push, kick, bruise, taunt, sneer, laugh
at me - there is nowhere you won't find me.
My nights and mornings have your cruel stare.

But there'll come a time when you'll fall down,
when you'll cry out,when you'll be left alone.
Then who will help you up, dry your eyes, brush
dust from your knees, gently wash your cuts clean?
Who will take your hand and walk home with you?


  1. Do you think this poem describes well what a bully is really like?
  2. What does the poet think will finally happen to the bully?

Did You Know?
A metaphor compares one thing to another without using the words ‘as,’ or ‘like’.  This poem makes use of metaphors to describe the bully.
Example: ‘You are cruel glass in the playground..’

Five Ways to Write Your Own Poem:

  1. Make a list of all the metaphors you can find in the poem. Be inspired!
  2. Now write your own poem about anything you like, using metaphors.
  3. You might like to use some of the words in the poem to get you started.
  4. You could also create a new list of words, like the one below, to make your poem of metaphors.
  5. When you have finished, have fun reading it out loud to yourself or to others!

Example List: River – sun – owl – snowflake – bridge – footprint – heart. 

Be a Buddy Not a Bully

  1. Your friend is feeling sad. Write a list of ways to be happy.
  2. Now add your ideas together to make a poem.
  3. Does it make your friend smile?

Lesson plan by Enda Wyley

Download Poetry Day Ireland 2016 poetry posters for primary schools:

» Enda Wyley 'Bully' poster
» Michael Rosen 'Don't Put Mustard in the Custard' Poster

Share your students' work!

We'd love to read and share poems written by children in response to our lesson plans. Email us with any poems you'd like to share and we'll upload a selection to our website and Facebook page.