Thursday, 13 June 2019

It’s the Northfield Elementary Poetry Celebration this week!

I’m looking forward to seeing the third grade poets. This is their chance to show off all of their hard work during the residency. The poems I share with you here are first drafts. Tomorrow is my first opportunity to see the revised poems.

The students will presenting and performing their finished poems for friends, family, and peers on Friday.

The third workshop of our residency was Pocket Poems. With the work we have done thinking about form (List Poems — our first workshop) and imagery (Food Poems — second workshop), the students have a foundation in some basic poetry skills.

Our third workshop is all about stretching the imagination and seeing where it takes us.

Find it on Indiebound.

The full description of this lesson is available here. The mentor poem is Calef Brown’s “Eliza’s Jacket,” from one of my family’s favorite books, Polkabats and Octopus Slacks.

The concept of this writing prompt is that we each have a jacket with magic pockets. Put your hand inside and what will you find? A super power? An enchanted coat? Your best friend? A dinosaur egg? That’s up to you, Poet!

Many years ago, the Northfield team and I developed a craft to go with this workshop. Each poet is given a blue card stock “pocket” — they look like the back pocket from a pair of jeans. The students personalize and decorate these pockets, then staple them to a display where they are stuffed with (you guessed it) the poems.

Students and visitors love taking the poems out of their pockets to read. The extra interaction adds fun to the process of reading. You’ll see examples of the pocket poem display at this post.

And now for some third grade pocket poems:

My Hippogriff
By Sarah L.

I have a jacket.
A jacket made of pockets.
In pocket number highest number ever
I have…
a baby hippogriff.
When it is young, I will find
raw meet and ferrets to feed it with.
When it is old enough, I can train
the hippogriff so its wings will be
strong enough to fly, so I can ride
it to get to places, with his soft white-tipped
wing by my side, his shiny beak clicking and
brown hooves running as we are ready for
take off. Soon enough, we start gliding
in the air. When we get back, he flies
into my pocket, and we have a
good night sleep, dreaming about the next day.


A Turtle in My Pocket
By Lysanne G.

I have a jacket, a jacket made
of pockets. In pocket #5, a turtle hides
inside. It comes outside every night and tells
me magical stories through the light. It eats
baloney, usually in a sandwich. He tells
cheesy jokes, as cheesy as they are. We play
outside at night, when my parents are
deep in sleep. Sometimes, instead of baloney,
I feel him macaroni. Sometimes even
chocolate. He smells like pie, because
of shampoo, with a bottom that smells
like soup. he looks like a rock, but green.


My Wings in Pocket #2
By Nora C.

I have a jacket, a jacket made
of pockets. In pocket number 2
I have a pair of wings. I take
them out to fly away when
I feel like flying to a place
where I can be alone to do
whatever I want. I take them
out when I want to avoid
doing something or to reach high
places. I want to sit where
I can’t reach. They are black,
black with white tips. I’d fly
with the birds and move through
the clouds.


D’s SP: Darcy’s Super Power
By Darcy B.

I have a jacket, a jacket
made of pockets. In pocket
103 I have a key that
unlocks my brain
and takes me to Maine.
The key tells
my brain to transform my
super powers so I can
fly, way above those
puffy white cotton balls so …
I can see the whole world
and if anybody needs
help, ’cause I will save
their day!


By Arianna J.

I have a jacket. A jacket made
of pockets. In pocket number 8
I have a magic ball.
If I ask the ball a question.
I can see what I asked.
“Magic Ball, can I see
the answers for the math test?
Oh. Ah. 68. 36.
Mom’s coming, get in pocket number
8.” Hmm. Now what shall I ask.
Oh, I know. Mom’s watching TV.
“Magic Ball, show me the latest
kids’ movie. Let me see my
brother’s future. Ahh! Eww! Change it.
My eyes are burning! Let me
see my future. I bet I’m going
to be a … OMG. I’m a baker. That’s my dream.”
I don’t even have a word
for how  happy I am. Anyway that’s my magic


Isabella’s Pocket
By Isabella T.

I have a jacket,
a jacket made of pockets.
In pocket number 9, I have the
Bahamas inside.
The warm, tropical Bahamas with water
that’s clear and calm. You see a barracuda,
marlin, or a swordfish pop out of the water
every few minutes for a
breath of air every once in a while.
Palm trees are springs up every
few minutes.
Snakes, monkeys, lizards, iguanas, squirrels, crabs,
red ants, bull ants, ants: Life is in the
Bahamas. It’s blazing hear round, pretty
hotels, house, apartments, and cabins.
Oh, but what’s this?
An anaconda bit me.
Oouu. I go back to school.
I’m lonely and all alone.
I invite my friends.
My friends and me pull out
our surf board.


By Anna O.

I have a jacket made up of
many pockets. In pocket 8,888
I have my magical abilities.
They make me half butterfly
dragon, half human. When I am ten
I will go through my metamorphosis
and get wings and silk. Oh, no.
That’s today! I take my power
out and glare at it. “Can’t you
wait?” I say. I have to hang on
to it our else it will dart
away. It wriggles onto my wrist
and I stagger sideways
as silk spills from my
wrists. Then my eyes close.
When I wake up, I have
wings. Now I can fly to
school, not take the dirty
bus. Hooray!


By Yash D.

I have a jacket,
a jacket made of pockets.
In pocket #99
I have a magic crystal ball that changes into anything I
want. It glows in the dark and is blue.
I can turn it into a house, so I can have a
private place and  no one can come in.
If I don’t have a friend, I can turn it into one.
It can make me teleport to the place where it was
made, and I will get another one.
It can even turn into a different font when I am writing.
It can turn into a tree that more crystal balls will fall off of.
If I make it into a smoothie and drink it, I
will have all the powers inside my body. I can
even make an endless supply of dragon eggs.
I can’t tell you what is in the other pockets,
because you will steal them.


Thanks for sharing your great imaginations, third grade poets! All poems are posted today with permission.

For more of this year’s student poems, please check out:
Poems from Third Grade, Part 1 — List Poems (Ms. Spencer, Ms. Sochol-Solomon, and Ms. Scavo’s classes)
Poems from Third Grade, Part 2 — List Poems (Ms. Hilliard and Ms. Trodden’s classes)
Poems from Third Grade, Part 3 — Food Poems (Ms. Hilliard and Ms. Trodden’s classes)
Poems from Third Grade, Part 4 — Food Poems (Ms. Spencer, Ms. Sochol-Solomon, and Ms. Scavo’s classes)

One response to “Poems from Third Grade, Part 5”

  1. Laura your poets of grade school astound us in their reach. I didn’t know hippogriff in grade school. These images & metaphors could come from seasoned older poets. Such an enrichment you provide. Brava! to both the leader & the future poem leaders.

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Laura Shovan

Laura Shovan is the author of the award-winning middle grade novel, The Last Fifth Grade of Emerson Elementary. Her second book, Takedown, is a Junior Library Guild and PJ Our Way selection. Look for A Place at the Table, co-written with Saadia Faruqi, in 2020. Laura is a poet-in-the-schools Maryland.

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