If your children claim they don't like poetry, you must introduce them to these funny poems for kids! Too often adults think that children won't appreciate the poetic art form because they never learned to like it either. But I guarantee poetry can play a special part in your relationship with your child! These poetry books are filled with funny poems and there are even tons of short poems for when your family needs a quick pick me up.
As you look over this list, you may even recognize some of the titles on this book list from your childhood! I've included classics, as well as newly published poems. From the soft, knowing chuckle to the hearty guffaw, these hilarious poetry books will make anyone laugh. So go ahead, I dare you. Pick up a book of giggle-inducing verse today! (Note: book covers and titles are affiliate links.)
No More Poems! A Book in Verse that Just Gets Worse by Rhett Miller. "No more poems!" is the last thing your kids will be shouting after you share these verse with them! This collection focuses on poems about everyday life that kids might experience: siblings, baths, karate, bedtime. There is bathroom humor (of course), fun word play and enough crazy illustrations that kids will be constantly looking over your shoulder during poetry time.
I'm Just No Good at Rhyming: And Other Nonsense for Mischievous Kids and Immature Grown-Ups by Chris Harris (without William Shakespeare). My youngest LOVED this book! Even though he enjoys telling me he hates poetry to torment me (what? that's a lie!) he kept asking me to read these hilarious poems. What does it have to do with life? Everything! Harris and Lane team up to bring you super wacky poems, deconstructed poetry and all around silly-ness. One of my favorite children's poetry books, ever.
The Complete Nonsense Books of Edward Lear. Most classic poetry for kids is not humorous, but Lear is one of the exceptions. His limericks range from the ludicrous to the droll. The short poems stand the test of time as do some of his long stanza-based poems like "The Owl and the Pussycat," a poem I can still recite by heart after learning it as a kid.
Oops by Alan Katz. We had great fun with this book of over-the-top humorous, rhyming poems. My son especially enjoyed the comic tale about how two brothers traded underwear, ha ha. Poet Alan Katz has many more poetry collection to choose from. All of them are hilarious so get thee to the library!
Tap Dancing on the Roof: Sijo (poems) by Linda Sue Park. This is a more subtly humorous book of poetry than, say, Dahl's (below). Nevertheless, I wanted to include it as it introduces children (and grown-ups!) to a poetry form they are most likely not yet familiar with. Sijo is a traditional Korean verse form. It has a set number of syllables and the content is typically humorous, often with a ironic or droll twist at the conclusion. The poems are short, which also makes them easily digestible. Enjoy!
Vile Verses by Roald Dahl. Did you know Dahl had a book of verse? It all makes sense now, doesn't it? As you can imagine, his poems are filled with fantastical inventive words, deliciously gruesome characters and playful rhythmic compositions. The verses are accompanied by Quentin Blake's iconic illustrations.
Any poetry book by Jack Prelutsky! I absolutely adore Prelutsky's poetry. He was the first U.S. Children's Poet Laureate and in addition to his own numerous books, he has edited quite a few collections of verse by other poets. He has odes, ballads, and poesies for every occasion as a good selection of themed poetry available as easy readers so even the youngest independent reader can enjoy a good chuckle.
Where the Sidewalk Ends by Shel Silverstein. You may very well likely be familiar with this classic tome of children's poetry. Who can forget Sarah Cynthia Silvia Stout, who did not take the garbage out? Your copy of this book of funny poems will be come well-loved, and well-worn.
A Visit to William Blake's Inn: Poems for Innocent and Experienced Travelers by Nancy Willard. This short, award winning picture book is full of funny poems that tell the story of a group of human, animal and sunflower visitors to an imaginary inn run by the poet William Blake. The inn is staffed by quirky characters; dragons and angels keep the place running. To be perfectly honest, I did not think my 10 year old would like this book so I started reading it out loud to myself. But he came running right over and immersed himself in the illustrations and the fantastical tale the poems tell.
More poetry your kids (and you!) will love:
- Wonderfully Diverse Poetry Books for Kids
- Children's Poets Your Kids Should Know
- Non-Boring Poetry Books that Will Make You Love Poetry!