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Free Verse Poems: Lesson for Kids

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  • 0:00 Free Verse Poems
  • 0:42 Rhyme Scheme
  • 1:04 Rhythm
  • 1:26 Example One
  • 2:10 Example Two
  • 2:53 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Heather Jenkins

Heather has a bachelor's degree in elementary education and a master's degree in special education. She was a public school teacher and administrator for 11 years.

Have you ever wanted to be somewhere with no rules to follow? Even in poetry, some poets prefer to write poetry that doesn't follow any rules. In this lesson, you will learn about free verse poetry.

Free Verse Poems

Do you ever wish you had a day where you could do whatever you wanted? Maybe you would eat chocolate cake for every meal and have recess all day long at school. You wouldn't have to do homework, floss your teeth, or eat your vegetables! As wonderful as a day like this would be, the reality is that rules seem to be everywhere, except for one type of poetry.

Free verse poems are poems with no specific rules or patterns that poets must follow when writing. If these poems were kids, they would stay up past their bedtimes and eat dessert before dinner every night! Free verse poems can be short or long and about any topic. They do not have set number of words or syllables per line.

Rhyme Scheme

In rhyming poetry, the ends of each line will usually have a rhyme scheme, or some set pattern. For example, in this picture, the pattern is one line of poetry that doesn't rhyme followed by two lines of poetry that do rhyme with each other.

An example of the rhyme scheme of a poem
rhyme scheme

Free verse poems do not have a rhyme scheme. They may have a few words that rhyme, but they do not follow a set pattern and randomly occur in the poem.

Rhythm

Free verse poems also do not follow a particular rhythm. Rhythm is how the words in each line sound together when they're read. For example, when you listen to music, you can clap along to the beat. Poems with a set rhythm work the same way, you can almost clap along or keep the beat as you read each line. Free verse poems usually change rhythm frequently and may alternate between short and long lines.

Example One

Free verse poems can be written about a wide variety of topics and can look very different on the page. The poet only needs to think of a topic and figure out what he or she would like to express to the reader through the poem. A simple example of free verse poetry is this poem called 'Brussels Sprouts.'

An example of a free verse poem about Brussels sprouts
brussel sprout poem

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