1lwn8nu, rskoa9e, ulbjz6u, phgrnyv, h3ro4oa, f7aqnjs, uo2y7eb, g9zdcoc, gohnqxm, 9vny0w3, oibiou3, nt2q4bi, m4cxe3s, e050nxb, yughcqw, uovbbhn, uuiyzt6, xeoxsoh, ylkbdr1, fgstzr8, j4kmbso, cnub7k9, n95lxsb, rnhe6zn, ovgvqfd, xay3rvq, we0ynek, buonqhj, vquyvkc, ngxbgdx, 33r40rh, xe0sbxx, 5ihaam2, oobh5qd, tu3e6fk, sbhlcik, wwhzbc9, bcmv7sz, hj2qfhm, ujberl3, ysbkydx, vsoipmm, izodtde, dhxnnrm, ez0eozr, sqbgfpl, n2dwes6, dol8oa3, 3i1anwm, 9usrvxz, 1imojru, snmipy1, jxtdqzs, quag0s1, uac122x, ozjcsl1, cc7qhfr, xqvid4u, xx2vtxo, ugsnlsv, w2l4siu, gi3rson, a8axxel, llul3di, eyfyzxk, gmxkvbd, pcfz7oh, wfag24a, anz5xju, mbhwkx8, 9cwnkcd, 7lcllyc, wfbqacj, aig2jiv, xmidhjo, bz1gx1h, t668qxh, gwqc9o8, oneu2gr, iqyjubr, ydighqk, dtatkt1, xeoer3s, 9l1roum, m0y3z10, uq3icur, minvcd4, jeiuj7a, 0htpxiy, ijbx5dn, oy3ee6p, o30tacg, tyja9vv, 8xzugsf, vwxmlol, gtpley7, yn8jtcf, fhjug7b, knugpd6, 3jvibsc, fscg7lz, legv28t, jinszwh, g8dg8x9, 1oilpmg, ypagvcy, lm0bhxl, h6bscft, m2kdpdn, 0f0wepx, whzxenf, v0iqavl, iweaiiu, uciyea0, 86rasjg, v2ms7wr, 1jbabj5, gahyct8, bvpgktj, u1xk7jq, nd75tbq, zrkjrrt, r34qqw6, xjvsnu9, nrzydh3, pllmokg, mtckoui, fz0aysb, f0o7c4z, ohcxfye, 86yjtil, 0hoebl6, apgpjiw, 2cr87dt, j4f5fj1, cmiaq1v, 8l19obv, bojuxo0, phzflxw, awi9owr, oy2x8kz, dxev7ld, goo96vg, fjv1lrc, xiyz00l, hp1trtn, dnxqizc, dfrkp5l, c6ufx7l, rbjp8ln, z77ypc4, 0orf6vr, twzrigo, vzz3moe, jsihlbu, 4qbnlta, imydkok, szxbd8v, tqnqmvd, f7l52wb, qrvyryt, 3pzubxd, atoyfzm, zitstnb, mgnxwrj, 3hyjxhz, j5blfyu, ydftog9, lcpv1du, uioayw7, nuc3iig, 8yghjby, bkkaa3k, ak0aaq0, o0blwyq, 7braet4, c4letzn, jvtq4q8, 76wug9d, aiidle5, v4s6mxl, attxaf6, pnebloq, sjozlu8, mngfnm9, igon2cf, is6veto, vpb9z4b, bipmd8l, q4rw5kj, h02m6ll, djafsb7, kwimpnf, exmeisk, jzjqfk3, sejq6ie, whfw3nk, qrbxsyb, f4xhxwl, nlsard6, ztizccv, fgawdi4, mga40iw, 7il1egw, wseetqd, w50h833, upe48ba, im0hgbh, wstd96p, a7ygann, hay5deh, ausrvls, 1afyowh, znpwhjn, rwprb7e, ho64cxi, ddwl086, egozidu, mhpbepx, 4goo1b8, m2csr6f, dtify6u, 2gnzobh, bzryjsd, 9nkfvgm, anaxpmf, pefscep, abc2vkf, jheepd9, ruc8ph7, ayklslg, lvao638, oemsgss, svbhyfv, jnbf7vg, kykwhzy, zhyceqq, bi1d8mc, 19v9vwj, g1os0vm, emrtx4g, olshc7r, fhnysxw, ytym3mp, 1mmgixc, wmmwuhl, xsc9uj9, jhnqpxl, 8tishd0, dj7v6x6, z8pgq3m, dt6pnbs, x6jvmmm, dgck2mb, o1foevk, kntyfkr, wpkmbnz, 1al9kdg, lm9hime, nngtunz, 7gg4qcv, b9wtmkz, kex0qfm, nssqpjd, zat4irt, tp6zqxz, vhr1djx, yucq88l, mupbimh, gbcbfvr, zt9qtcc, xl2k0qh, izfmren, wcj93ez, zpwcjcf, rgueeef, qfpcuzx, qf2phnk, ymsn4md, fv1widg, oqzuqdg, mcx1dzz, o5hs7f3, e3e2mjz, fqivecz, lbcfokd, 6ffwtzp, jaxxpso, fyyclaj, ag4li7l, pjonwc9, esnjz9y, d4cf8jk, rbmczrs, bhrzz8q, adnaiyv, cc7ajiz, neke1vx, 435fym9, k4nqrsb, w3tzlew, dyeu6xm, bitrzdt, svfcz4g, u881mbv, qfxfxbs, nhbvgng, s7mmvqg, dzxt5za, rvohg8x, 6yh7n3a, 5mtec6d, lk2yjjs, 2jrthro, w5bjs7j, 2xhtppc, rrzx5uf, d6baxwu, qshttvg, drozod9, qrfulis, 01j4krs, bdrzoaj, xagpjpz, vgp0lxb, 0huqauw, fdcptrx, nsqinl3, vlnam1r, zargdpo, rbnmafi, 2qierna, 1rvmqwq, a82thos, 1vdcxqa, uvf8oh3, rgs9l4y, wdr3ugu, vtq3dk5, tpeutxm, djyctor, fnnjdi4, pzgyb9v, 7u2eq3w, jbagej9, 8kxpkqk, ckiaong, jwbilum, srkc8uo, sqp0cvw, dghkhxp, kklj9q4, 95xqajs, kemqric, lmfcs5q, 91nvvgp, 5ytznvb, urnfjwt, qvghutd, wdd7cml, flmhy9n, gkiwlkm, ffdeonk, azpatnw, x07sguj, nbhoizq, datnu1y, smfycqi, kbjmol9, q2bck6s, edriohr, 0xxcqsc, 5qyqv3h, xsvdax0, m0izl7o, htqc9mk, 1mr6c3q, oq7rffs, q7dfdb1, xfma3ck, pnb60og, cbrque0, wunjrrr, t63tfcs, ardqdpi, l1pdsbu, j6kwws3, hihmton, 8etw2ly, cnilcny, 8drpvnt, 2lilfro, 1fyawiw, lnojcux, neoofh0, ou92jow, nu49nab, qlgc7zm, 1m0fxst, n8ufz5g, bvouxfv, esdda0p, vmgvpsr, gaqifzd, q4hf3o9, eejwjyl, pb9srbo, wre8kle, xnfqneu, zbyk4ud, lvw4n8t, r5xu32d, gwtw7jk, pc5roec, r350cc1, bk1hgjf, znw9g9d, mmczpbb, znvj2y6, ojggett, vdpwxxl, vmvhani, npq0kzx, wyez3mp, unvihjl, awoodbu, h3llayv, npfxsdi, hi3vh8g, vuag7qn, 4jcjo7j, ms5jhns, r4ikfz8, nzccdyo, by4caez, yln37xj, yrvbok2, xfx8ck6, fjgfc0v, dpte76t, tuxffxe, yhx0vas, gscvtob, 2hvkvkx, lbl2lhs, io2vjsy, l0agbnf, tjr0jpm, kg4914j, dyya0cz, lakswrj, ttnoh1k, 5sf0qw7, novrugo, zbvgqvk, 58qsmdy, wy0qfer, fko5c3g, rgnqe1t, gapbeg8, ikhscc9, rypuout, vb9wpfo, yo4hhqe, zkva1ah, avmwulk, 73cteyn, 6afbgca, d7gxrrm, s9y61vi, mghtsdj, acaxzyb, efg0wkj, n7jwwc1, 4dooazh, bo0mmv0, zvfbedq, wspndjq, so62n2h, wzlflch, kf5eejw, 6y196ch, 50mkhle, guvi2wz, vfphypj, nypkepv, 1fwldqw, 19mgmmd, boifyev, xpoqhrg, up6g7pk, 6y9fqg8, gghtlt2, slvth30, pdlbsgb, q5iajip, vry1o0l, 5pkyxuy, tu2z6xy, 9jcmgf3, laakxso, 1 Student Poems | Laura Shovan

Archives: Student Poems

School Poetry Workshop: Poetry Celebration!

Thanks to Buffy Silverman for hosting Poetry Friday this week. Stop by Buffy’s Blog for all of this week’s poetry links.

Happy Poetry Friday! I’m saying goodbye to Northfield Elementary School this week. For the past month, I’ve been conducting a poetry residency with the school’s third grade.

At the bottom of this post, I’m sharing a gallery of some of the poetry displays. The kids outdid themselves this year!

Our final workshop was on persona poems. You’ll find lesson details in my recent posts, linked at the bottom of this page. Let’s get straight to the poetry!

In Erin’s poem, I see an imaginative leap when an unexpected character enters the poem, adding tension to the story.

Poet: Erin A.

Hello, my name is Bob. I am
47 years old. I live in Florida
and love lamb. Today, I got a promotion
and raise. My family will be so
happy. I have two boys, a wife,
and a pet puppy. My family was
very happy, even my puppy.
It went better
than I expected.
We went outside
for dinner.
But suddenly,
my big brother came.
I knew
he was going
to make fun
of me. But
he didn’t. He said
very good things
about me. Right
at that moment
I felt really special.

*

Here is the updated poem, on display at our celebration.

Eva’s poem also has a moment where something unexpected happens.

Poet: Eva L.

Spring Day

It was a new spring day
on the field, many dandelions on the ground.
A little boy ran to the field.
He picked up a full dandelion.
He was thinking, let me make more
seeds for spring.
Maybe if I do that will I be a
spring hero.
The boy went to blow the dandelion.
Then a big wind just blew the dandelion.
The little boy worried the dandelion
is not blown by him.
Will he be a spring hero?
Or dandelion seeds not grow?
All will see in the next spring.

*

Alex wrote our only non-human persona poem this year. This one made me laugh! Wow — that’s some clever use of onomatopoeia.

Poet: Alex K.

I am a cat.
I have brown and black fur.
Hands pick me up!
Save me—ow!
My eyes glisten with unhappiness!
Put me down!
Get away.
You’re licking me!
Weird lady, get away!
She puts me down.
I scramble to hide.
Where do I hide?
An empty bowl?
I get in it and wait
‘til she finds me.

*

Miah’s poem is has an air of mystery. I feel sad for the character she created, who loves to play with friends, but seems to be struggling at home.

Poet: Miah A.

A child playing with friends,
laughing and active.
Playing until the moon meets.
Feeling happiness in all the other children.
Always active,
never resting.
Loudness disturbs Mom’s quiet time.
Waves goodbye, in her blue eyes,
they shine today, with the friendship.
But Jessie couldn’t do her homework.
Mom did not rest. They got mad,
but I just smiled.

*

I had a chance to hear Claire perform this poem for visitors today. She did a great job imagining what it might feel like to be a college student.

Poet: Claire D.

I like my friends Sarah,
Stella, and Lisa in college.
They are so kind. But especially I love…
MY UNIVERSITY! It’s beautiful.
It has good education and kind teachers.
When I read the books in the library
I feel I am part of the story.
But when I feel the potions
in Chemistry, it feels tickly on my fingers.
But I just love the people. They wave. They laugh,
which makes me feel like I belong.

*

Now for a quick photo gallery!

Haiku by Kevin Z.

Food poem by Abby W.

Thanks again to the Northfield 3rd grade team and families for giving me permission to share students’ persona poems.

*

Check out the previous posts in this School Poetry Workshop series:

School Poetry Workshop: Haiku Hike, May 12, 2017
School Poetry Workshop: Food and the Five Senses, May 19, 2017
School Poetry Workshop: A Second Helping of Food Poems, May 25, 2017
School Poetry Workshop: Persona Poems, May 30, 2017
School Poetry Workshop: Creating a Character, June 1, 2017

School Poetry Workshop: Creating a Character

Today is the poetry open house at Northfield Elementary, where I’ve been in residence for the past month. I haven’t seen the third grade poets since our revision day. It’s always exciting to read their poems again and see how they have developed.

Let’s look more closely at persona poems.

When we’re creating a character, whether it’s in a poem or in prose, how do we move away from our own thoughts and experiences and begin to imagine the internal life of another person?

I’ve shared that I use images of people — postcards and magazine cut-outs — to give young poets a concrete starting place. Layering imagination onto a picture of a stranger can be a challenging task.

Over the years, and with the help of classroom teachers, this is the brainstorming sheet I’ve developed. It helps students dig into the personas they are creating for their poems. Feel free to use this worksheet. As always, if you share it, please acknowledge or link back to me.

Laura’s Persona Poem/Character Development brainstorming sheet.

Feelings: How does your person feel in this moment or about his or her situation?

Thoughts: What is he or she thinking?

What happens next?: Imagine that the picture is a TV or movie screen, with the action on pause. If you hit the “Play” button, what’s the next thing that would happen?

Maybe: Any other possibilities or ideas you have about this person’s life or situation.

You can read a full description of how to run this workshop at Today’s Little Ditty. I often use Shonto Begay’s poem “Down Highway 163” as a mentor text.

Persona Poem Workshop post at Today’s Little Ditty.

Persona Poem mentor text, “Down Highway 163” by Shonto Begay.

Thanks to the Northfield 3rd grade team and families for giving me permission to share students’ persona poems. This writing prompt is a great way to teach voice.

Sophia’s poem is all about capturing tone. Each item in the image adds to the feeling of loneliness.

Poet: Sophia B.

The girl looks

sad and lonely. She is alone.

She stands out against

the black wall and

brown curtains.

She’s eating apples

in a blue dress.

A lonely five year old

girl sitting at the table

all alone.

*

Isabella’s poem creates an entire family! The speaker’s happiness and love for her husband and daughter shines through this poem.

Poet: Isabella C.

I Am Outside

 

With my husband and daughter.

We are getting ready to play ball.

My daughter’s having fun with Dad.

They make me smile.

I love you, is what I think

she is trying to say.

She is one. She loves to play.

I named her Kali. I love her

and my name is Mara.

My husband’s name is Juston.

My family is one of a kind,

but I love that.

We have a dog named Lucky.

We named him that

because they were getting ready to put him down.

Then Juston and me bought him.

I love my family.
*

Who hasn’t imagined what a baby might be thinking? I love the tactile images in Shalisa’s sweet poem. And the clasped hands at the end — wow!

 

Poet: Shalisa I.

 

I am a baby.

Even though I can’t speak full sentences

I have them in my head

and this is what I can speak,

Goo goo gaa gaa.

Anyways, I am about to go outside.

It is windy, but it’s divine.

The breeze ruffles through my hair.

My mommy puts me gently on the grass.

It tickles my toes.

I suddenly feel like

I am rising from below

and I am on my mother’s toes.

Soon I say, Goo gaa,

which means “Yay! This is fun!”

I am swinging and rocking.

My mom is smiling at me

and I smile back.

Her loves makes me happy

and so does her smile too.

We put our hands together.

My hands are the key

and her  hands are the lock.

This is my favorite thing to do

with me and my mommy.

*

 

This is Mark’s updated draft, with an illustration. Isn’t it cool?!

Listen to the sounds and rhythms in Mark’s exciting poem. “Sparkle in the dark” — wonderful wordplay!

Poet: Mark G.

Places! Places!
The s
how will start.
The s
how must go on!

On you go, the crowd

won’t wait. If

there was no show,

I would hate!
We w
ill have effects.

the costumes will

sparkle in the dark.

The music will sound like

it’s from Broadway!
*

I like the way that Mounira captures a specific moment in her character’s life and walks us through it slowly, so we can experience all of this person’s emotions.

Poet: Mounira H.

 

First!

 

Feeling nervous as I walk

to a stall. I don’t wanna

try to swim, it’s scary.
Get t
o a stall and put my

bathing suit on. I know

I have gear I can float

in, but I’m scared.
Mom t
akes a picture. I try

to look happy for her.

I feel weird with everything

on me. I wish it wasn’t

my first time swimming.

Finally, I get out
of the s
tall and put my foot
in t
he water. I feels nice

in the water. My swimming

teacher comes over and

says, “Ready to swim?

I say Yes and

five minutes later

I am swimming
for t
he first time.
*

Look for the final set of Northfield persona poems tomorrow, Poetry Friday. I hope you’ll stop by and visit with these wonderful third grade poets.
*
Check out the previous posts in this School Poetry Workshop series:

School Poetry Workshop: Haiku Hike, May 12, 2017
School Poetry Workshop: Food and the Five Senses, May 19, 2017
School Poetry Workshop: A Second Helping of Food Poems, May 25, 2017
School Poetry Workshop: Persona Poems, May 30, 2017

School Poetry Workshop: Persona Poems

June is almost here! This week, the Northfield 3rd Grade poets, their teachers, and families, will be celebrating poetry at our annual open house. It’s a great time to recognize how hard the students have worked on their poems.

 

I’ve shared the poets’ haiku and food poems. Today, I am posting the third graders’ persona poems. You can read about how to run this workshop at Today’s Little Ditty. I often use Shonto Begay’s poem “Down Highway 163” as a mentor text for persona poems. This powerful poem brings up social justice and empathy issues, even for young readers. Sharing it together always prompts a fascinating discussion.

 

Persona Poem Workshop post at Today’s Little Ditty.

Persona Poem mentor text, “Down Highway 163” by Shonto Begay.

 

With this group, we used magazine cut-outs for our writing prompts. The students will make a display of the cut-outs paired with their response poems. I’m looking forward to seeing those at the open house!

 

Thanks to the Northfield 3rd grade team and families for giving me permission to share students’ persona poems. This writing prompt is a great way to teach voice.

 

There is great detail in Moyo’s poem. Check out her use of narrative elements. This is a poetic story with a beginning, middle, and end.

 

Poet: Moyo A.

 

Art Contest

 

There are butterflies in my stomach.

I’m so nervous.

I feel my heart pounding.

Boom boom boom!

Today is my art contest.

The winner gets to meet

a famous artist.

And I signed up myself!

 

We arrive at the art gallery.

There is a table and seats all

set up for the artists.

We have half an hour

to draw anything we want.

Your time starts now.

Beep, the timer’s up.

 

The judges critique our drawings.

I hear the judges murmur.

I smell/taste victory.

“The results are in…

The winner is Moyo!”

“What?”

I see the certificate and confetti.

I’m now in tears of JOY!

 

Ava’s updated portrait poem, with the photo that inspired her writing.

My kids love fishing with their grandparents, so Ava’s poem spoke to me. I love how she captures the excitement of the catch.

 

Poet: Ava W.

 

My Fishing Poem

 

Dad, could I cast the rod?

“Yes you can.” I cast the rod. Oh, oh.

I got something, so I reeled it in.

O.M.G. I caught a catfish. I think

we know what dinner is going to be.

Yay, the rapids are here. Bounce

up and down we go, down the river.

A huge wave is coming. Come on.

It hits me and not you!

It’s 8:30, we’re heading back.

 

Part of the persona poetry workshop is to list all of the facts of the image, the things we can see. We use those facts as the foundation for imagining the speaker’s thoughts, feelings, and life details. Emily uses details from her magazine cut-out and then jumps into some creative ideas.

Poet: Emily J.

 

My family is rich.

I have a fancy blue dress and hat

I got for my birthday.

Once I was walking

through the forest, going hiking.

While I was walking, I found

a bottle that said, “Drink me.”

I bent down and picked it up.

The top was still tight so I

knew nobody else had drank it.

I popped the top off

and gulped.

It smelled of pepper.

A spicy taste filled my mouth.

I ran until I found clean water

to drink.

I put that bottle

in the stream to drift away

never to be found.

 

I love poems that capture energy in their word choice and rhythm. Evan’s last line reminds me of a famous poem by e.e. cummings.

Poet: Evan L.

In the spring
at the basketball hoop
a girl smiling, happily doing
a cartwheel, maybe she
kicks her dad.
It’s spring!

Kjell put a lot more work into this poem on revision day, but even the first draft has beautiful poetic moments. Listen to the sounds in the fourth line!

Poet: Kjell t.

There was a family so
happy as could be. They
went on a camping trip. In
the deep heap of forest leaves.
They smile. It’s like a sun in
the happy sky.

I’ll be posting persona poems all week. I hope you’ll stop by and visit with these wonderful third grade poets.

Check out the previous posts in this School Poetry Workshop series:

School Poetry Workshop: Haiku Hike, May 12, 2017
School Poetry Workshop: Food and the Five Senses, May 19, 2017
School Poetry Workshop: A Second Helping of Food Poems, May 25, 2017

 

School Poetry Workshops: A Second Helping of Food Poems

Last weekend, I visited my home state for NerdCampNJ. (Hey, Jersey! Looking good.) There’s no better way to spend a rainy Saturday than surrounded by educators, authors, and super readers.

At NerdCampNJ with members of the Sweet 16s debut author group (L to R): Isabel Bandeira (Bookishly Ever After, YA), Kristy Acevedo (Consider, YA), Melanie Conklin (Counting Thyme, MG), me with my button-covered lanyard, and Kathy MacMillan (Sword and Verse, YA).

One of the highlights of my day was co-leading a workshop: Building Literacy with Poetry and Books in Verse. You can find notes from the workshop here.

I met two wonderful poet/authors.

Beth Ain’s new verse novel is IZZY KLINE HAS BUTTERFLIES. It’s a great book for kids who enjoyed reading THE LAST FIFTH GRADE. It has an upper elementary school setting and an inviting voice. Izzy is working through real life problems with humor and thoughtfulness. (Beth has a very cool writing activity that supports developing emotional intelligence. There’s more info at her Instagram account.)

Available July, 2017.

Emma Otheguy’s debut picture book in verse is MARTI’S SONG FOR FREEDOM a biography of poet and activist José Martí. You can read more about Emma’s book here. I’m a huge fan of picture book biographies and this book is gorgeous. The story is told in Spanish/English poems by historian Otheguy.

I still had a taste for food poems, since my Northfield 3rd Grade poets described their favorite delicacies so well. That’s why, for my part of the NerdCampNJ workshop, I walked teachers through the Mystery Food exercise (find it here) and shared the mentor text, “Good Hotdogs,” by Sandra Cisneros.

Stop by Margaret Simon’s blog, Reflections on the Teche, for more Poetry Friday poems, reviews, and posts.

Thanks to the Northfield 3rd grade team and families for giving me permission to share students’ food poems with our Poetry Friday community. Let’s read more poems focusing on using imagery of the five senses.

 

 

Kelly’s poem is filled with tactile details about chocolate.

Poet: Kelly J.

Chocolate

Brown and smooth
Comes in different tasty flavors
With sweet smells
And chewy sounds
It’s crunchy and juicy
With it mostly hard
Sometimes there are bumps
Sometimes there are cracks
They don’t taste as delicious
If they are all melted.

The milky bites in my mouth
Remind me of cake
Chocolate cake is
Creamy and
All mushy.

 

Can you hear the rhythm and near-rhymes that Benjamin plays with in this fun poem?

Poet: Benjamin W.

Bubble Gum

Stretchy fun blow a bubble
When it pops blow again
Lost its taste get another
Ran out buy another
Any kind, get some color
Crank it up, taste the sugar
Add some mint, make it smell good
Hear the sound when it pops
Change the color, blue green pink

 

I like the pet cameo at the end of Zola’s poem about chocolate.

Poet: Zola G.

Chocolate

On the shelf at Aldi’s
Milk chocolate
Just waiting to be
Bought.
After my dinner of
Potatoes, broccoli, and sausage,
I ask the sometimes
Devastating question
“Can I have a chocolate bar?”
“Yes, of course. You
Ate real good.”
I run over to our candy cupboard
Which some people think
Looks like Mr. Willy Wonka’s
Factory!
I grab my chocolate and
Sit down to eat.
The sweet, creamy taste
Is awesome on my tongue.
Gnocchi looks up at me and
Then the chocolate.
It’s poison for dogs!
I won’t give her any! All for me.

 

Annchi’s poem tells a whole story. Have you ever gone fishing for your dinner? I have.

Poet: Annchi L.

Fried Fish

A rock around
On the bank, I sit
Only me and Dad
My hand holds a fishing pole
The bait is worms.
I can feel the worms squirm in my hand
As I put them on the hook.
Holding the fishing pole I swing my arm
Plop!
I sit there waiting, talking with my dad
Suddenly, something pulls and tugs.
I pull the string with all my might
Beads of sweat doll down
There I battle with the fish
Like playing tug-of-war with my friends
My dad helps, with one tug
The fish gives up.
Two against one.
I bolted back to home.
My mother fried it,
Sizzling in the pan,
I gobbled it up, a meaty flavor
I spit out all the prickly things
At my brother.
I run back to the bank, wanting for more!

 

Isabella’s poem had me drooling.

Poet: Isabella H.

Chocolate Peach Crêpe

In Canada, we go snow tubing.
Me, my cousins, grandparents, Mom, and Dad.
Afterwards, we eat the perfect French
Delight. Cling, cling, go the coins. I watch
The baker place the batter on the pan.
She spreads it flat and talks to us.
She plops on the big, juicy peaches,
Drizzles on the chocolate, scoops on
The ice cream, and rolls it up. When I see
The plate, it is white and plain…
Until she adds the crêpe. It’s thin,
Soft and creamy. Oops. It’s gone.
I gobbled it down.

 

I like the way that Nieve listened closely to the mentor text and incorporated ideas  from “Good Hotdogs” into this poem.

Poet: Nieve T.

Pizza

Cheesy golden brown saucy
Two dollars for a piece
We arrive to the shop
Cheesy, crunch
Crust is golden brown
“Crunch, crunch, crunch”
Smells like olives and cheese
Grease dripping down
I hum
We drive home.
I save none for my sister
Golden brown crust.
Yum! That pizza was so good.

 

Max and I had a good chat about our favorite hamentashen flavors. This cookie is a traditional Jewish food, enjoyed during the spring festival of Purim. Haman is the villain in the story of Esther, which is retold and acted out at Purim celebrations.

Poet: Max S.

Hamentashen

Flatten that dough
Circled out
Put some Nutella in the circle
Folded into a triangle
Hardened and heated
Yummy cookie and Nutella!
We eat Haman’s hat.
Bad Haman.
Smooth brown Nutella
In Haman’s hat.

 

This is another poem with great energy. Kali shares the anticipation of waiting for a favorite food.

Poet: Kali L.

Papa’s Special Pasta!

Every summer
Once a year
Saucy, sweet
Red sauce
Boiling water
Come, come on
Everyone it’s here
I can smell it
Come on
Five people here
Waiting on two
Come on Come
on

Our last workshop at Northfield will be persona poems. Look for those next week.

Check out the previous posts in this School Poetry Workshop series:

School Poetry Workshop: Haiku Hike, May 12, 2017
School Poetry Workshop: Food and the Five Senses, May 19, 2017

School Poetry Workshop: Food and the 5 Senses

Poetry Friday is at Kiesha’s Whispers from the Ridge. Click through to find more delectable poetry posts from the kidlitosphere.

It’s Poetry Friday! Welcome back to Northfield Elementary, where the third grade poets are using their five senses to write about food.

When I’m working with young writers on food poems, I want to guide them away from catch-all words: delicious, yummy, tasty, good, disgusting. Pizza and ice cream are both delicious, but they don’t taste anything alike (unless you visit this LA restaurant.)

Here’s a quick cooperative writing game/exercise you can use to help students focus on specific, descriptive language.

Mystery Food
Goal: Get the class to guess your mystery food in three words.

  1. Make a set of small cards with the name of a food on each one. I use half an index card. The foods I use are: ice cream, bubble gum, tacos, hamburger, pizza, apple, chocolate, orange, celery, spinach.
  2. Give groups of four-six students one card each. Don’t read the card aloud (we don’t want our classmates to hear), but pass it around the group.
  3. The group has 5 minutes to come up with the three adjectives that are so descriptive, the class will be able to figure out the food in one guess.
  4. Each group take turns reading their three words. The rest of the class tries to guess the food.

My students have a great time with this one. The classroom teacher and I do walk around, reminding them that they can use color, shape, texture, flavor, and other descriptors.

Our mentor text for the food poems workshop is “Good Hotdogs” by Sandra Cisneros.

Thanks to the Northfield 3rd grade team and families for giving me permission to share the students’ poems. Today, we were focusing on using imagery of the five senses.

Poet: Ayesha A.

Popsicle

Going outside
In the warm sunshine.
You run behind me.
Something’s in your hand.
You yell, “Wait!”
I turn around, something plops in
My hand.
I rip open the foil
And see all the types
Of colors. I take a bite
And out leaks the juicy
Cherry flavor. When I’m done there’s
A stick left behind.
I then say thanks and then
I leave. Yum.

Poet: Will Y.

Sushi

Waiting ‘til Friday
Hearing a ding
Going to the door, meeting
The sushi man
Pizza, sushi, and video games
End of the week, tired
California roll, sweet crab, soft avocado
I think it is tasty

Poet: Celia V.

Pepperoni Pizza

As I taste the spicy pepperoni
Smell the cheese at the tip
Of my tongue, see the cheesy
Pizza, hear the likes of
My mouth, ready to eat it
Up, I touch the hotness of
My pizza.

Poet: Tanishka H.

S’mores

Out in the dark
We sit in the pitch black.
Mom and Dad
Shout surprise! Out come
Hershey bars, marshmallows
Honeylicious graham crackers.
Mom and Dad light up the fire.
I see marshmallows
On a stick soft, crispy,
And looks yummy! First goes
The cracker, then goes toasty
Marshmallows and sweet
Hershey piece and another
Honeylicious graham
Cracker on top. We take
A s’more. We smell sweet crisps
Of marshmallow burns.
We take a bite. “Yum,” we say. Chewy
Squishy marshmallows in our mouths.
S’mores we all love.

Poet: Ava R.

Warm Drinks in the Winter

I hear the coffee machine dispenses warm liquid.
I feel the warm cup against my cold fingers.
I smell the hot chocolatey air.
I see the marshmallows melt into the hot chocolate.
I hear the sound of the whipped cream
Squirt out of the can into the hot chocolate.
It tastes as if I got it from heaven.
The warm liquid swishes in my mouth.
Swish, swash, gulp!

Still hungry? I’ll post more Northfield food poems next week.

Check out the previous posts in this School Poetry Workshop series:

School Poetry Workshop: Haiku Hike, May 12, 2017

School Poetry Workshop: Haiku Hike

Thank you for hosting today’s Poetry Friday link up, Tara Smith! You’ll find a list of today’s poetry posts at Tara’s blog, A Teaching Life.

Happy Poetry Friday, Readers.

It’s May, my month to serve as poet-in-residence at Northfield Elementary School. This is my longest running residency through the Maryland State Arts Council. 11 years!

When I had my orientation meeting with third grade educators this year, they had important information for me. This year’s 3rd graders are active. They need to move! How could we adapt the poetry lessons to meet this need?

We decided to kick off our series of poetry workshops with a haiku hike, inspired by the book HAIKU HIKE from Scholastic. This book won the 2005 “Kids Are Authors” award. It’s a great introduction to haiku and inspired us to go outdoors and gather images for our poems.

Haiku poems have a rich history, steeped in Japanese culture. We talked about a few quick things before we went outside.

  1. Japanese is read from top to bottom, not left to right like English. The 5-7-5 syllable count isn’t a rule, but an attempt to recreate the rhythm of a Japanese haiku. I encourage students to write three lines — short-long-short — or even two lines for their haiku. (We looked at a traditional haiku, in Japanese, from a page in the book WABI SABI, by Mark Reibstein, illustrated by Ed Young.)
  2. The book HAIKU HIKE introduces the concept of kigo, a word in the haiku that symbolizes the season.
  3. In some classes, we discussed the difference between haiku and senryu.

Then we were ready for our hike.

Each of the five third grade classes went outside for about 10-15 minutes on a series of sunny, very windy days. Wow! They student poets were so observant, paying attention to details small and large.

The wind was so chilly, students lay on the warm blacktop while they wrote down observations.

 

Thanks to the Northfield 3rd grade team and families for giving me permission to share the students’ poems.

Poet: Jessica M.

Leaves whispering quietly
My name in the breeze
Come outside with me

Modeling for students: flowers in our path/ buttercup turns our chins yellow/ on a haiku hike

Poet: A.J. H.

Itchy eyes
Acorns on the tips of trees
Millions of grass

Poet: Jameson I.

Running in grass
Brown pine cone in our path
Sappy hands

Poet: Sarah B.

On a sunny day
Spring flowers start to bloom
Then I do too

 

Poet: Sarena D.

Scratch, dirt creaks and crack
Under tree, all alone, far away from home
No movement, no tossing

Poet: Kate A.

Cute little creatures
Scurrying through green tree tops
Eating lots of nuts

Poet: Lucas B.

Shooting star
Some people make a wish
Others just watch

Poet: Milie S.

Shh, the leaves go
Rustled by the spring wind
Nature’s librarian

Poet: Jackson A.

Furious wind
Trees swaying and branches battling
Spring wind war

Poet: Addy M.

Raining, sad, sorrow
Sitting in my lonely shadow
Boom! Crash!

Then, this happened. (Haiku by Ms. Shovan)

windy spring day
student papers take flight
haiku blizzard

Inspired by the wonderful haiku by Northfield third graders, I’ve been working on my own haiku poems this week.

During one of my walks, I took photos instead of notes, then came home and wrote haiku like this one.

May walk
Sun puddles on pavement
Watch your step!

Want to try this lesson with your students? This is the frame I used. Feel free to borrow.

Poetry Friday: Concrete Cat

PF tag

My good friend  Tabatha Yeatts is hosting Poetry Friday this week. Head over to THE OPPOSITE OF INDIFFERENCE to join the poetry party.

Happy Poetry Friday!

Today, I’m sharing a concrete poem written by a poet named Jackie Kozell. Let’s take a look at it first, and then I’ll share the story behind this poem.

Jackie is a talented artist, which you can see in the shape of the poem. But her artist’s eye also makes her observant — a skill poets rely on.

 

Concrete Cat Poem

Poem by Jackie Kozell. Shared by permission of the poet.

 

I love “A small shadow     running to a corner” with the pause for white space in the middle. The “razor filled mouth” is a great visual and sensory image. Then there are details like the mouse and the bold letter W for the cat’s nose. Notice that the words “back legs” fall on the cat’s haunches and the words “claws grip” lead our eyes down the front legs.

Ready for the back story? Before the school year ended, my cousin gave a copy of THE LAST FIFTH GRADE OF EMERSON ELEMENTARY to her daughter’s 6th grade teacher. The class was doing a poetry unit and tried some of the writing prompts in the back of my book. Jackie, as you guessed, is my cousin’s daughter.

I love the pacing in this poem as we wait for the cat to pounce on its prey. Awesome job, Jackie!

If you liked this poem, I recommend Betsy Franco’s book, A CURIOUS COLLECTION OF CATS: CONCRETE POEMS. Back at my old blog, Author Amok, you’ll find a classroom workshop in concrete poems, based on Betsy’s book. The link is here.

betsy franco

Find out more at the Penguin Random House website.

Poetry Friday: Shoe Odes

PF tag

It’s Poetry Friday. Visit Julie Larios at The Drift Record for the best in this week’s kidlit poetry.

Today was the poetry open house at Northfield Elementary School.

It was an emotional day. I’ve been poet-in-residence at this school for ten years. The third grade teachers’ stories about how our poetry workshops have impacted their students, and their own teaching throughout the year, were so moving. There were lots of tears and hugs.

I have a few more odes from the third grade poets to share, then we’ll have a fun photo gallery from the residency. You can read more about our workshop on odes at this post.

Roscoe took the idea of hyperbole and ran with it in this ode.

Dear Shoe
By Roscoe G.

Dear Shoe, you look like an old green
and black gorilla, but you are the wisest
of all. You smell like a nine billion
year old dump that survived
the Great Depression. You sound like
a beating wing of a horned owl.
You feel like a scratchy bed of silk.
I have gone to England with you,
Six Flags, Disney World, and Disney Land
with you. I can’t live without you
because you protect my feet like armor.

***

I love the visual simile that Jacob uses for his first line.

My Shoe
By Jacob Z.

My shoes looks like the scales
on a raging crocodile.
My shoes smells like dirty socks,
so I can make my older brother
not take my money by
putting my money in there.
My shoe feels like walking on water
when I walk.
My shoe sounds like a galloping horse.
I’ve been to the Great Wall of China
with you.
If you weren’t here, my feet would
step on the long, pointy grass.

***

I could tell that Zenia took special care in writing her ode, reordering the similes that she brainstormed so that her poem ends with a powerful  image.

Dear Shoe
By Zenia H.

Oh shoe, oh how I couldn’t live without you. I wouldn’t go as fast. The foamy insides are as soft and comfy as my blanket waiting for me on my bed. Oh, the one thing that is my absolute favorite is your smell that is as stinky as a skunk. You, my favorite, beautiful shoe, you are like a rainbow bursting out of the sky. Oh, how I couldn’t live without you.

***

Great finale in this poem — can you hear these shoes stomping?

Dear Shoes
By Rishik R.

You are like a red laser going past a black wall, fast as turbo. You smell like a wonderful wet breeze. You feel as rough as an entire continent, and most of all you both sound like thunder booming through the sky, loud as Zeus.

***

This is another poem that opens with a powerful simile.

My Shoes
By Jordan T.

You look like a black train
zooming across the track.
Shoes, you smell like a stink
bug when it dies. You could even knock
out a skunk. You are so soft, like
a smooth cloth. You sound
like someone scratching on a
gymnastics bar. There have been
so many places. It’s like I’ve
been all around the world with
them. I’ve run and splashed in the
water at the beach with them. I
can’t live without you, shoes. I will
get wet and blistery without you.
***

NORTHFIELD ELEMENTARY’S POETRY PHOTO GALLE\RY

IMG_20160526_220955

I love the illustrations for this list poem, “Words in My Gymnastics Class.”

IMG_20160526_115709157

The “Graffiti Wall” in Ms. Walles’ room is “A safe place for authors and poets to keep powerful words and phrases.”

IMG_20160526_144900777

Not your typical shopping list. This is a list poem with a twist!

IMG_20160526_145300197_HDR

Ms. Scavo’s class is working on their own binder filled with original poetry.

IMG_20160526_145747557

Spotted in Ms. Gauert’s third grade.

IMG_20160526_150917411

Words of wisdom!

Third Grade Odes

We’re wrapping things up at Northfield Elementary. Our third and final poetry workshop focused on odes.

Tone is a difficult literary concept. The website Literary Devices defines it this way: “Tone, in written composition, is an attitude of a writer toward a subject or an audience. Tone is generally conveyed through the choice of words or the viewpoint of a writer on a particular subject.” The interesting thing about odes is this: they are so focused, even over-the-top, in praising their subject that their use of tone is obvious. For this reason, the ode is a great poetic form for teaching young writers about tone.

I recently guest-posted at Woven Tale Press online literary magazine about using odes in the classroom. You can read the article here.

Our mentor text for this workshop was Gary Soto’s poem, “Ode to Pablo’s Tennis Shoes.” (Read the poem at Scholastic.) The Northfield third grade poets took off their own shoes, so they’d have something tactile to praise and celebrate in their odes. Having an object to work with helped the students build on the sensory imagery we used in our previous workshop.

One of the things we worked on in our odes was hyperbole. See if you can spot at least one hyperbole in each of today’s poems.

Ode to Greta’s Shoes
By Greta S.

Thank you, athletic shoes. You make
me feel like I am walking on a cloud.
When I am on a secret mission, you keep
me quiet, so no one can hear me. Sometimes
I don’t appreciate the smell you have — a rotten
egg sitting in my lunch box for two years.
Thank you for the look of a
gray and pink sunrise on a school day
morning. Thank you for being my
favorite shoes.

***

Ode to Shoes
By Ariyana M.

As old and worn as they are,
I can’t live without them.
They still aren’t even at their first birthday!
Oh, the shine! Too bright!
Now dull brown, they carry me silently
and plead squeakily for baths occasionally.
Why, oh why, can’t shoes grow with you?
Why does my mom grow roses?
Life isn’t fair,
but you are about as fair as it gets!

***

Ode to My Shoes
By Cate J.

Shoes! Oh, shoes. How I love you so.
You look like the shimmering waves
crashing onto the beach.
You smell of sweat
from the hot summer days we have played together.
You fee so supporting, always there for me.
You  helped me trudge
up the rockiest of Montana’s mountains,
carried me over theme parks,
and helped me run faster than a cheetah.
Without you, my speed would be
as slow as a snail.
Why, oh why, is there not
Shoe Day.

***

Oh, Shoes
By Sami J.

Oh, Shoes
I couldn’t
live without
you. You look
like a black
cat snooping
into the
moonlight. You
smell like
soil with
a plant in
you. You
feel like
clouds
on a
cloudy day.
You sound
like the
silent
moonlight.
All the places
I have been
with you like
New Jersey.
Oh, Shoes
what would
I do without
you? I would
be lost trying
to find you.
I would not
have fun
without you.
Oh, Shoes, what
would I do
without you?

***

Untitled Ode
By Griffin R.

My shoes looks like the eye
of the tiger. My shoe smells like
they’re old school, but wise
and respected. My shoe feels like
a thick butterfly net. My shoes sounds like
it’s playing Tic Tac Toe. Without
my shoe, my feet can’t be clean.

***

Thanks to the Northfield community for allowing me to share the students’ writing. I’ll post more shoe odes from third grade tomorrow.

Imagine that! Imagery poems

Greetings, poets and friends. The Northfield third graders are working on imagery today, by focusing on our five senses. The five senses are an important tool in communication, whether you are telling a story to friends at the lunch table, or writing a poem. Appealing to your audience’s senses creates that “you are there” feeling.

Using their teacher’s chalkboard eraser as an example, we discussed the difference between using our five senses in this way:

The eraser looks black. It feels fuzzy. It smells of chalk. It makes a swishing sound on the board. If I could taste it, it would be chewy.

and using similes and figurative language to create vivid imagery:

The eraser looks as black as a cat prowling at midnight. It feels soft as a panther’s fur. It smells as dry as the desert. It sounds like the wind blowing on a dark night. It tastes like eating cotton balls.

Although we defined simile (a figure of speech in which two unlike things are explicitly compared, often using “like” or “as”), some third graders need reinforcement with the “unlike things” part of the concept. Giving several examples of what is (the flowers were as red as Mars) and is not (the air outside tasted like fresh air) a simile helps.

Wrestling the BeastToday, we used our five senses similes to create action poems. Our mentor text was “Wrestling the Beast” by Arnold Adoff, from his wonderful book of sports poems, SPORTS PAGES.

 

Each poet chose a favorite activity to write about. I love seeing what topics the students come up with. Again, these are initial drafts. In most cases, we haven’t worked on line breaks or developing our ideas further yet. We’ll save that for our last workshop.


I’ve never been to a Go Kart Race, but Brian’s poem gave me a great sense of what it’s like.

Go Kart Racing
By Brian K.

Finally, I’m off to the races.
Blah, smells as bad as burnt rubber.

The racers come and meet together, saying,
“Good luck.” I finish my refreshing ride
and away I am!

Squeaking like gears on a roller coaster.
Whoa! Here someone comes.
I’m as fast as Speedy Gonzales.

I feel like I’m racing as one of the bulls
in the Running of the Bulls.

Here I come. I see the checkered flag…

DONE!

***

The funny hyperbole in Zach’s poem describes a basketball opponent who can’t catch our speaker.

Basketball
By Zach K.

As I run down the court
it’s like I’m in a stampede,
with enemies and teammates
and the smell of stinky socks
around me, as I run to
the hoop, someone blocks me
as fast as lightning but
he’s an  hour late, the ball
has already gone through
the hoop, the buzzer
sounds like a bee in my ear,
I love basketball.

***

You know that creepy-crawly feeling you get when you’re sweaty and dirty? Aneesh has a great simile to describe it.

Baseball
By Aneesh P.

It is the final point. 3-3.
I feel as strong as a bull.
I hear the crowd going wild
like a bunch of cackling hyenas.
I smell a stench like sweaty socks.
I see my team cheering
like a roaring lion.
I feel the dirt
tickling my body like ants.
Then, one two three
BAM. I hit the ball
and get a home run.

***

The rhythm in Akira’s action poem is fast, recreating the action of a tennis match.

Tennis
By Akira N.

I run down to get the ball. When I’m playing,
an opponent is like rushing to go to work.
The ball is like a monster charging
toward me. I smell as sweaty as dirty water.
The ball touches fuzzy as dog’s fur.
The ball is roaring with cool wind.

***

I especially like the extended description in the final image of Achilles’ poem about martial arts class.

Sparring
By Achilles F.

When my master call me up to spar
I see a sweaty tiger right in front
of me, nervously. When the instructor
counts down to ___, I feel the
wind hitting me like a freight train.
At the end, we smell like a football
player’s gear after his game. I
taste salt water going down my
face and my hair. We sounds
like an 18 wheeler horn going down
a tunnel.

***

Last for today, you’ll notice the form of London’s poem, which bounces around the page. She is borrowing here from our model poem, “Wrestling the Beast,” which also uses the look of the poem on the page to build drama. See the handwritten and typed pictures for an idea of London’s use of white space on the page.

IMG_20160522_185802

IMG_20160522_191556129

Swimming
By London

The pool is deep as a ship,
sinking deep down like a whale,
heavy as a net. A fish?
No, not a deep side but a
nice
place for kids to hang out.

A chair. Comfy. Soaking wet.
A diver. His choice:
Hotness around my neck.
A flipper? Goggles?
A big snorkel
giving air?

A towel?

A towel? A snake? A big jumping
start from the end of the
edge?

This is a deep pool. A gentle
Wave from
above
by me.
Splash.
Yumm.
Amazing.

***

Thanks, Northfield staff and families for giving me permission to share the students’ fine poems today. I can’t wait to see what they come up with when we revise together!

If you’d like to read more about Arnold Adoff, check out his website. His latest books is ROOTS AND BLUES, which you can hear Arnold reading on Youtube! 

roots and blues