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Create a Kenning poem

What is a Kenning poem?

A kenning poem is a special type of poem that describes an object or a creature without ever using its name. The poem is made up of a list of four descriptions and each description has only two words. Here’s are examples – can you guess what they are? Slide the panel to the right to show what the object is.

Make your own Kenning poem

You will need paper and a pen or pencil

Search pit ponies on the internet. Write down all the words you can find that describe pit ponies. What new words have you found?

You can make a mindmap with your words and phrases. Here is an example of one I made for ‘the sun’.

Now make your own poem and remember:

Four lines

Two words in a line

Don’t use the words ‘pit ponies’.

Create a poem game

Here are more examples of pit pony poems. Which one do you prefer? Why?

Pit pony

A dusty dragger

A blind walker

A blackened soul

A coal hauler

Pit pony

A cart puller

A silent labourer

A sooty toiler

A dark shadow

Cut out some squares of card the same size. Draw your an object or a creature on one side. Create a Kenning poem for the other side. Ask family members to choose a card with the word side up and guess what is on the other side.