Poetry for children is a great reading alternative

Poetry for children is one of the most rewarding experiences educators show. Besides the literacy aspect of poems, it also shows rhyming, metaphors, and boosts their imaginations.

Not only is it fun to learn another language by reading different types of literature, but also it is interesting to see how other authors interpret the world around us.

Poems can turn into songs and they turn into poems. But the beauty of it all is that in a short or long poem, you appreciate the rhyming in Spanish. Children enjoy using various Spanish words to interpret the content.

But what are some great sources in poetry for children to start this literary endeavor?

In “Animal Poems of the Iguazú, Animalario del Iguazú” by Francisco X. Alarcón, you read about the many wonderful creatures that live at the rainforest of the Iguazú in South America in prose form. Alarcón makes a wonderful reference to this wonder of nature for children to know about with metaphors, rhyming, and alliteration.


What are the Iguazu Falls in poetry for children?

The Iguazu Falls (Cataratas del Iguazú) are located between the borders of Brazil and Argentina. These immense waterfalls are about 80 meters high (approx. 269 ft.), 2.7 kilometers wide (1.7 miles), and there are 275 drops. The name Iguazú is derived from the primitive language guaraní: ‘agua y grande’, which the literal translation means big water.

In this vast area of now protected rainforest, you find many different species from monkeys to panthers to exotic birds. Alarcón makes a wonderful mention to the Iguazu’s beauty in his books and poems.

poetry for children Iguazu Falls

Here are examples from his works that describes the earth at the Iguazu Falls:

“Tierra colorada”

“Tierra, tienes
tanto hierro
… suelo

… color
es … colorado

como el ají
y el pimiento…
…la canela y el chocolate…”

poetry for children

“Red Earth”
“Earth, you have
so much iron
… soil

… color
is … rusty

… ground
dried chiles
and peppers…

…cinnamon and chocolate powder”

The author makes a wonderful description and compares the earth (tierra) on Iguazu Falls as red as peppers and chiles and magnifies our senses that red implies hot (caliente). It also implies that the texture (textura) of the earth is like cinnamon or chocolate, powdery and gritty. In a beautiful way, the poem wants you to use all of your senses to explore the beauty of the Iguazu Falls.

Poetry for children is a great way to introduce other genres of literature. Reading can be fun with books. But it can also be more engaging when educators show poetry as an alternative to books.

Have you tried poetry for children, recently? Did you like it or not?

Barbara Mascareno

Barbara is an educational writer, teacher, and instructional designer. She loves to write K-12 education content, teaching strategies, bilingual education approaches, and foreign language.


  1. S. Yissele on at

    Muy cierto Barbara las rimas y la poesía son muy buenos para que a los niños les guste más la lectura!


    • Barbara Mascareno on at

      Gracias Yissele 🙂 me alegra de que te guste.

  2. Me encantan las poesías y qué buenos libros!

    • Barbara Mascareno on at

      Siempre es lindo leer libros diferentes para los chicos.

  3. monica young on at

    Oh I love this, I have to try it with my son to increase his vocabulary.

    • Barbara Mascareno on at

      I hope you guys have fun playing around with these ideas.

  4. Que lindas esas rimas! Las cataratas del Iguazu esta entre mis planes de visita cuando vuelva a Argentina.

    • Barbara Mascareno on at

      Hay, que lindo, espero que sea pronto y nos muestras fotos de tu viaje.

  5. Me encanta! Podré conseguirlo para envio a Puerto Rico?

  6. Teresa Garza on at

    Es tan ilustrativa tu página.. Me encanta… excelentes ideas.. De esos detalles que ya los sabes pero luego cuando te toca quedarte con algun sobrino no sabes que hacer… Mil gracias por tu info.

    • Barbara Mascareno on at

      Hahaha…Que lindo que te gusta este articulo. Espero que te sea util cuando estes con tu sobrinito.

  7. Poetry to learn language- ingenious! And what a great way to start conversations and learn even more. Love the idea. BB2U

    • Barbara Mascareno on at

      Thank you 🙂 Poetry can be a very effective way to encourage early literacy skills.

  8. Que lindos poemas!! La verdad que es una excelente opción que ademas les habré otra puerta de posibilidades. Muchas Gracias por compartir!

    • Barbara Mascareno on at

      Por supuesto, la poesia para los ni~nos es un encanto.

  9. La poesia es algo que no se puede perder y me parece excelente utilizarla de esta manera.

    • Barbara Mascareno on at

      Gracias por tu comentario.

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