UK and International School Specialists
Working with over 5000 schools in the UK
Over 800 International Schools in more than 65 countries.
Neal Zetter
Neal Zetter

All About Neal Zetter

Neal Zetter is a London-based comedy performance poet – with a 25-year background in communication management and mentoring – who uses the writing and/or performing of poetry to develop literacy, self-expression, confidence, creativity and presentation skills in children, teens and adults. He makes language fun and accessible for the least engaged while stretching and challenging the most able. He performs in his workshops too, as he has a 24-year track record of appearing in West End comedy and poetry clubs and theatres plus he runs his own club in north London.

Neal’s School Visits

Neal encourages students to take risks with their writing and have fun with words and language while developing their imaginations. Students will learn simple but effective poetry structures, improve their use of language tools and ‘word choice’ consistent with the curriculum and will perform their work too.

Primary Schools and Secondary Schools

Neal’s workshops can run from 30 mins to all day, depending on the school’s requirements and students’ ages, numbers and abilities. One class per workshop is optimum with smaller groups for, EAL, G&T, SEN, low confidence children etc. He will work a very full school day so long as he has voice breaks, normally when staff and children break too.
 He also performs his interactive comedy poetry to any number of children in an assembly – no limit – and incorporates a Meet the poet Q&A session within the performance.
 His one-day workshop needs are simple: pencils, paper and white board. For performances to very large audiences he might need a mic and a PA system, depending on acoustics and size of the auditorium.

Poetry Styles and Themes

Depending on age and ability, Neal may use these original or established poetry styles: thin, blank verse, repetitive, step, stair, rap, recipe, interactive poems etc. He encourages a range of ‘language tools’ when participants write their poems e.g., metaphors, similes, alliteration, onomatopoeia, adjectives, adverbs, synonyms, personification, senses etc.
 His workshop themes cover a wide range of fun and serious topics with over 40 different to choose from, e.g. Superheroes, Food, My Favourite Place, War & Peace, Emotions, Dreams & Nightmares, London, If…, Music, the Moon Landing, Black History Heroes, Animals, Insects, Self-Identity, Relationships, Sport/Olympics/Football World Cup, Respect, The Elements, Colours, Weather and many more.

Workshop Outline for Primary and Secondary Schools

Optimum workshops size is one class, each workshop runs from 30 mins to all day (depending on the school’s requirements and students’ ages, numbers and abilities). Neal’s typical workshop would be:

• Neal reads/performs his own poems – many interactive

• Neal outlines poetry theme • Neal’s ‘how to write poetry in six simple steps’

• Neal provides supporting  framework or example

• Participants plan/brainstorm content

• Participants write poems

• Participants edit poems

• Participants read aloud/perform with tips from Neal

• Neal closes with Q&A and a poem.

Presentation Skills Seminars & Insets

Neal also runs fun presentation skills seminars using the medium of performance poetry. They are suitable for students involved in class presentations, debating, talks on assemblies, job and university interviews etc. 
Neal also runs Insets on presentation skills for staff and Insets on teaching poetry to raise literacy standards.
 Plus he will appear at education conferences to speak on any aspect of the above – and he’ll give an interactive comedy performance too as part of the presentation!

Neal’s Books

‘Bees In My Bananas’ and ‘It’s Not Fine To Sit On A Porcupine’ 

bees in my bananas

‘It’s not fine to sit on a porcupine’ was listed in Booktrust’s Top 20 Children’s Favourites.

‘Bees in my bananas’ won the ‘Wishing Shelf Award’.

Fifty of Neal’s funny poems in each with illustrations, for ages 6-13

 

‘Ssssnap! Mister Shark’ and ‘Odd Socks’

SSSSNAP KILLER SHARKODD SOCKS

Full-colour illustrated first performance poetry books for ages 2-6. Illustrated by our very own Chris White.

 

‘Here Come the Superheroes (Raps and Rhymes to Save the Galaxy)’

Featuring in Reading Agency’s top 20 children’s poetry books, full-colour illustrations once again provided by Chris White. Marvel comic-style, all superhero poems and super facts, for ages 6-13.

 

‘Yuck and Yum’

Neal’s book ‘Yuk and Yum’ is a collaboration with one of our other poets, Joshua Seigal.

 

This funny food based collection of poems features 25 poems from Neal and 25 from Josh and is ideal for 6-13 year olds’.

 

‘Invasion of the Supervillains (Raps and Rhymes to Worry the Galaxy)’

A companion book to ‘Superheroes’, featuring full-colour illustrations once again by Chris White. Marvel comic-style, all supervillain poems and super facts, for ages 6-13.

Samples of Neal’s Poems

Kids Love Ketchup

Kids love ketchup on their chips
Kids love ketchup on their crisps
Kids love ketchup on their eggs
Kids love ketchup on their bread

Kids love ketchup on baked beans
And to drown the taste of greens
Kids love ketchup though of course
Posh kids say ‘tomato sauce’

Kids love ketchup on pork chops
Chicken, chocolate, lollipops
Kids love ketchup they form queues
Just to watch that ketchup ooooooooooze

Kids love ketchup in meat pies
Make my bottle jumbo size
Kids love ketchup on their plates
It’s the relish they most rate

Kids love ketchup on their hair
Hands, nose, clothes and everywhere
Kids love ketchup twenty-four seven
Like to live in ketchup heaven

Kids love ketchup on their cheese
Kids love ketchup freshly squeeeeeeeeeezed
Dig the red ketchuppy mess
Do kids love ketchup?
Yes! Yes! Yes!

Orangutang, atang, atang, atang, atang, atang

Who’s swinging on that tree
Eats fruit and veg for tea?
The orange one that’s lots of fun who children queue to see

Orangutang, atang, atang, atang, atang, atang
Orangutang, atang, atang, atang, atang, atang

With arms extremely long
Huge muscles, super-strong
He says his second cousin’s the gorilla called King Kong

Orangutang, atang, atang, atang, atang, atang
Orangutang, atang, atang, atang, atang, atang

He’s jumping up and down
Fists thumping on the ground
He loves to play so every day he’s monkeying around

Orangutang, atang, atang, atang, atang, atang
Orangutang, atang, atang, atang, atang, atang

His home is way out East
The cleverest of beasts
He picks his nose, he bites his toes, then scratches all his fleas

Orangutang, atang, atang, atang, atang, atang
Orangutang, atang, atang, atang, atang, atang

He likes to beat his chest
Tries so hard to impress
Of all the apes you’ve ever met who’d you think is the best?

Orangutang, atang, atang, atang, atang, atang
Orangutang, atang, atang, atang, atang, atang

Orangutang, atang, atang, atang, atang, atang
Orangutang, atang, atang, atang, atang, atang

 

Reviews and Recomendations

‘I just wanted to say thank you for all the work you did with my daughter today. She attended one of your poetry workshops, arranged by Hillyfield Academy at Wood Street Library. She has been writing poems since she got back. It’s 8.45 and she has only just stopped so you have obviously inspired her in a big way! Much appreciated.’ – Parent of Year 4 child from Hillyfield Academy

‘I just wanted to let you know how much our students enjoyed the Able Writers Event at Stanmore Library yesterday. The poems they produced on the subject of war were amazing. Under Neal Zetter’s guidance they learnt how to plan, write & edit their work and to have the confidence to then perform their poems to the group. It was so nice for them to have the time to do this without the time constraints of a normal English lesson. All the poems were of a really high standard and it was obvious they had thought carefully about the subject before deciding how to write their poems. Neal was a great facilitator, and his amusing poetry provided a nice contrast to the war topic during their breaks. Thank you for arranging this day and please pass on our thanks to Neal.’ Wendy Castle

“Your approach to poetry is amazing. You have made this kind of literature interesting and I have no doubt that a variety of age groups will have fun with your interactive activities.” Una Cameron, St Antony’s RC Primary, Newham

“I was very impressed with the pace of the lesson and the energy with which it was delivered. Mr Zetter is obviously a very talented man who has great success motivating children.” Kat Dionysius, St Dominic’s RC Primary, Hackney

“The feedback was very positive – the teachers were in awe of the outcome.” Maureen Okoye, Headteacher, Davies Lane Primary, Waltham Forest Council

To Make a Booking

To make an enquiry about Neal Zetter, or any of the other authors, poets & illustrators listed on this website, please phone Trevor Wilson on +44 (0) 1535 656015, or email him at trevor@caboodlebooks.co.uk