Poetry Box June challenge: Pattern poems


hop skip hop

skip hop skip

skip skip skip

hop hop hop


flop flip flop

flip flop flip

flip flip flip

flop flop flop


now I drop








You can write poems that play with patterns. I love poem patterns – they can be simple and they can be intricate.

So your challenge is to write poems with word patterns.

Here are some starting points for you:


Word order patterns

Collect a handful of words and then make patterns on the lines by repeating them in different ways. They may or may not rhyme.


swoop kite swoop soar

kite swoop soar swoop

swoop soar swoop kite

soar kite swoop swoop


First line patterns

Repeat the first line of each verse.


The cat sleeps in her basket

the sun makes her fur shine

The cat sleeps in her basket

she dreams of climbing trees

The cat sleeps in her basket

soon it will be night


First word patterns

Repeat the first words on each line.


I sing to the stars

I sing to the moon

I sing in the garden

I sing in my room


Rhyme poems

Rhyme is such a fun way to make patterns in a poem – you can make rhyme patterns at the end of the lines or even the start of the lines! Or you can sprinkle rhyme through the poem and make a sprinkle pattern.


The cat dances on her paws

The dog pirouettes on her feet

The cat swipes with her claws

The dog asleep in the heat


I like hiding rhyme patterns


The tiger pounces on her prey

she swoops and bounds

away with her dinner.


Form poems

There are lots of poems that use a special form with loads of rules.

You can follow the rules of a form of you can break the rules.

These poems always use patterns.

For example a strict haiku has three lines with 5 then 7  then 5 syllables. It doesn’t traditionally rhyme.

These are some poetry forms:  villanelle, pantoum, sonnet, sestina, rondel, triolet.


A triloet has 8 lines that make a pattern   (tree -o- lay)

A (first line)
B (second line)
a (rhymes with first line)
A (repeat first line)
a (rhymes with first line)
b (rhymes with second line)
A (repeat first line)
B (repeat second line)


The Moon


The moon shines bright

the trees rattle in the wind

cats creep in the night

the moon shines bright

cats creep in the light

cats like sardines tinned

the moon shines bright

the trees rattle in the wind


That was tricky to write and I might break the rules (I often do and might write ‘cats licking tinned sardines’ instead!).


So play with word patterns. Invent your own!   HAVE POETRY FUN!!


Deadline: 26th June

Send to: paulajoygreen@gmail.com

Please include: your name, age, year, name of school

Don’t forget to put PATTERN POEM in subject line so I don’t miss your email.

Open to Year 0 to Year 8 in Aotearoa.

I will write letters back at the end of the month.

I will have a book to give away because I like to give books away!

I will post some favourites on June 30th.







3 thoughts on “Poetry Box June challenge: Pattern poems

  1. Pingback: Poetry Shelf noticeboard: the NZ Book Awards for Children & YA finalists | Poetry Box

  2. Pingback: Poetry Box noticeboard: a new collection of poems and illustrations for children by Paula Green | Poetry Box

  3. Pingback: Poetry Box review: Eva Lindström’s ‘My Dog Mouse’ | Poetry Box

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