Robert Browning was born in a suburb of London, England on May 7, 1812. His mother was an accomplished pianist and a devout Christian. His father, who worked as a bank clerk, was an artist, scholar, and collector of books and pictures. Through most of his childhood, Robert was homeschooled, being proficient at reading and writing by the age of five, and learning Latin, Greek, and French by the time he was fourteen. In 1828, he enrolled at the University of London, but he soon left, desiring to read and learn at his own pace. Robert Browning enjoyed the poetry of Elizabeth Barrett, and after corresponding with her for a time, married her in 1846. The couple moved to Italy, where they both continued to write. They had a son, Robert “Pen” Browning, in 1849. After Elizabeth’s death in 1861, Robert and Pen moved to London. In his long life Robert Browning wrote many volumes of poems. The Pied Piper of Hamelin is always a favorite with children, as are How they brought the Good News from Ghent to Aix, and Ratisbon. His most popular poems are Pippa Passes, The Ring and the Book, A Blot on the ‘Scutcheon, and Saul. Robert Browning died on the same day that his final volume of verse, Asolando, was published, in 1889.
The following poem “Spring Song”, excerpted from Pippa Passes, is great for younger children to memorize and recite due to its simple rhyme scheme and vocabulary. If you do record and upload a recitation, be sure to share a link for us all to enjoy!
The year’s at the spring,
And day’s at the morn;
Morning’s at seven;
The hillside’s dew-pearled;
The lark’s on the wing;
The snail’s on the thorn:
God’s in His Heaven –
All’s right with the world!
Poetry for Young People, Robert Browning includes 25 fully annotated and beautifully illustrated excerpts.
The Pied Piper of Hamelin, an unusually attractive edition of this well-known poem, elaborately illustrated with richly colored full page illustrations, along with numerous drawings and marginal decorations
Record what you learn about Robert Browning on:
Learn more about Browning’s homeland and complete:
England Shutterfold Map
England Flag Simple Fold
…all found on Homeschool Share’s Europe Connections Page.
Practice handwriting skills with:
Analyze “Spring Song” excerpt using:
Enjoy more of Robert Browning’s poetry here.
For a tea time treat, these Snail Cookies sound fun to make!
And if your children take you on a rabbit trail to learn about snails, here is a Free Snail Unit Study and Lapbook.