Freedom

Posted June 19, 2015 & filed under Notebook, Poem, Student Writing.

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I am marching down the street.

It’s night, and I am singing with

people all around me.

It’s cold, but I don’t notice

because I am trying to find my

way to freedom. I am letting

my soul take flight like a bird.

My arms are linked to the sky.

Voices ring in my ears as we

sing our way to heaven.

By Maya, 4th Grade

Man in the Lake

Posted June 17, 2015 & filed under Notebook, Poem, Student Writing.

landscape-76835_1280You stand deep in the snow.

You walk in the circular path

around the cracked ice on the lake,

the water underneath like black quartz.

You look around the frozen tundra and see him,

a weeping man on the thin ice.

He sees you and runs.

You yell but it’s too late.

The world slows as the ice shatters

underfoot. He stumbles,

you see the fear in his blazing sea green eyes.

“Help,” they seem to say but it’s too late.

He plunges into the ice cold water

and I know in my heart it’s too late to stop it.

By Max, 9th Grade

Friends

Posted June 15, 2015 & filed under Notebook, Poem, Student Writing.

girls-462072_1280I am skipping and jumping rope

under the sun with my friend.

I tell her we will be friends forever.

If only we could go on top of the

world so we could feel the soft

floating clouds and be always happy.

 

By Reyna, 2nd Grade

When I Feel Powerful

Posted June 12, 2015 & filed under Notebook, Poem, Student Writing.

Kids Writing Menil Watchful EyeWhen I feel powerful, I wear pink.

I write stories about girls who

run the world.

My heart feels like a drum,

but I won’t let anything stop me

when I feel powerful.

 

By Tria, 2nd Grade

Teen Writing Contest!

Posted June 10, 2015 & filed under Contest, Poem, Student Writing.

5439082_origGigantic Sequins is a literary arts journal. Check out their announcement below about a contest for teen poets:

GIGANTIC TEEN SEQUINS:
CALLING ALL TEENAGE POETS!

In celebration of young poets, Gigantic Sequins is seeking submissions of poems from teenage writers ages 14 through 19 for an online feature!

Interested? Submit 3-5 poems, no longer than 2 pages each, to teen.sequins@gmail.com

The deadline for submissions is JULY 20th, and all those who submit will be notified about the status of their submission by JULY 27th!

When you submit, please do the following!

1. Include a cover letter in the body of the email, listing your age, your email address, the name of your school and city, and a brief biography (any personal information of your choosing, up to 100 words).
2. Include your poetry submission as a document attached to your email in a .doc or .docx format.

A single poem from each age group will be given a spotlight on the Gigantic Sequins blog. Even if your poem is not selected for a spotlight, you will be listed on our site and receive the distinction of honorable mention in celebration of your dedication to poetry!

Each age group will be judged individually by the poet Robby Auld an undergraduate student at Salem State University, and by the poet Sophie Klahr, Robby’s mentor and Gigantic Sequins’ creative contributing editor.

The Gigantic Teen Sequins feature will appear on our blog during August 2015 and be publicized on all of the Gigantic Sequins social media sites.

You can find us online on Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, and our home site! Questions from teachers or students may be directed to Sophie at sophie.klahr@gmail.com.

So Much Fun

Posted June 8, 2015 & filed under Poem, Student Writing.

When my aunt comes to visit

we have SO MUCH FUN!

She brings us crazy string

and tells us stories.

She laughs when we jump

off the couch and snort

milk out of our noses!

My aunt knows how to

blast open a day.

Not even rain gets her

down. She is SO MUCH FUN!

By Josh, 3rd Grade

Clean Up, Clean Up, Everybody, Everywhere

Posted May 26, 2015 & filed under Notebook, Student Writing.

Sara Selber, PhotoMy grandma was a kindergarten teacher, and one of the songs she taught her class was, “Clean up, clean up, everybody, everywhere. Clean up, clean up, everybody do their share.” Whenever we went over to her house and made a big mess, she’d start singing this song.

 

My grandma made an impact on me because now whenever something bad happens in my community, I don’t just sit around. I get up and ask, “How can I pitch in?” because in the back of my head, I can hear grandma singing, “Clean up, clean up, everybody, everywhere.”

By Jolene, 11th Grade

 

Button Poems

Posted May 20, 2015 & filed under Poem, Student Writing.

eternally_entwined

Long legs

strong as a

tree trunk

 

Long snake

hiding in a

dark hole

 

Long grass

in the dark

night

 

Roots like a

spider web

of fingers

 

By Carlos, 1st Grade

I Wonder

Posted May 6, 2015 & filed under Poem, Student Writing.

30439-astronaut-sketchI wonder what it would be like to live on the moon

and wear an astronaut suit to school

I wonder what it would be like if my parents still

lived together and we were a happy family

I wonder what it would be like to have a pet

dog that I could call my own

I wonder what it would be like if we only

saw the world in black and white

I wonder what it would be like if no one was

ever mean to me

By Tasha, 4th Grade

No Killing

Posted May 4, 2015 & filed under Student Writing.

FullSizeRender (9)Hurting is not the option. No bombs, guns, or gas. Only words matter and are the option. Talking may not always be the option, though…like the police, if they don’t surrender, they might have to use their weapons. We have to use [weapons] to hunt, fight enemies, and win wars. But we need that to survive. We know that killing is wrong, and there is a book and a TV show that shows that lesson. It is called Batman. Although Batman dodges and uses skill, he does use violence, but he still will not kill. He thought that we should not kill but only fight for a right. I thought of this because I was hurt and almost killed. I was at the hospital. My family was there with me. There were so many tools and gadgets. It smelled like a cake. It sounded like beeb. . .  beeb. . . beeb! My family said, “You will be alright.” I was shocked, and I felt scared. This is why I believe that people should not kill people but use skill or words.
By Xavier, 3rd grade

Change

Posted April 27, 2015 & filed under Poem, Poem of the Day, Student Writing.

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Photo by: Aikawa Ke

 

Sometimes I don’t like change

but then I remember how

leaves turn red and gold,

then fall of and then grow

back again bright green.

I remember change is part of the life

cycle and I’m okay with it.

 

By Justine, 4th grade

 

Click the link above to listen to the poem read on KPFT radio by Caprice Haddad, a 6th grader at Johnston Middle School For the Performing and Visual Arts in Houston. Faculty is Susan Calvin, 8th grade History Teacher The background music is “Hope For Tomorrow” by Seastock. Produced by Susan Phillips.

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Poem a Day is made possible in part by H-E-B Tournament of Champions, Copy.com, The City of Houston through the Houston Arts Alliance, Texas Commission on the Arts, and KPFT 90.1.

 

Original post: January 12, 2015

 

When a Sheep Dreams

Posted April 23, 2015 & filed under Poem, Poem of the Day, Student Writing.

 

When sheep dream

They don’t look up at

the sky, but their heads

are filled with clouds

floating quietly

this way and that

 

By Alashia, 4th grade

 

Click the link above to listen to the poem read on KPFT radio by Arianna Vara, an 8th grader at Johnston Middle School For the Performing and Visual Arts in Houston. Faculty is Jerri Deleon, Assistant Principal. The background music is “J. S. Bach: Sheep May Safely Graze – BWV 208” by Kevin MacLeod. Produced by Susan Phillips.

NPMbanner

Poem a Day is made possible in part by H-E-B Tournament of Champions, Copy.com, The City of Houston through the Houston Arts Alliance, Texas Commission on the Arts, and KPFT 90.1.

 

Original post: February 12, 2015

Tracking

Posted April 9, 2015 & filed under Poem, Poem of the Day, Student Writing.

 

 

I track the clouds

in the sky

as they fly

I track birds

in the trees

as they sing

I track ants

on the ground

where they crawl

I track my cat

on the fence

where he slinks

 

By Tricia, 2nd grade

 

Click the link above to listen to the poem read on KPFT radio by Alonna Johnson, an 8th grader at Johnston Middle School For the Performing and Visual Arts in Houston. Faculty is Rolethia McKelvey, piano teacher. The background music is Sidewalk Shade” by Kevin McCleod, Incompetech.com. Produced by Susan Phillips.

NPMbanner

Poem a Day is made possible in part by H-E-B Tournament of Champions, Copy.com, The City of Houston through the Houston Arts Alliance, Texas Commission on the Arts, and KPFT 90.1.

 

Original post: January 26, 2015

Calling Poets in Grades 7-12!

Posted March 31, 2015 & filed under Contest, News, Poem, Student Writing.

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A personal invitation from Flashbang! Writing Studio, which is seeking poetry by students in grades 7-12 for publication on its website during April, National Poetry Month:

As participants in NaPoWriMo, Flashbang!’s Sarah and Jeff are writing and posting a poem a day for the month of April. But we want more! We want your poems. Send us your love poems, hate poems, pet poems, unicorn poems, football poems, name poems, video poems, macro poems, gif poems, breakfast-lunch-and dinner poems.

Come back to the blog every day in April for a new writing prompt and at least one new poem. Note: The poems you submit do not have to be based on the prompts we publish. If they are, that’s awesome! Let us know! But more important than following our prompts is writing something you love. Send us what you love.

All poems accepted for publication on the blog will also be considered for publication in the inaugural issue of KaPow!, Flashbang!’s creative writing zine, scheduled for May publication. If your poem is published, you’ll receive a free copy of the zine. Additional copies will be available for $5, and all proceeds will benefit the Greater Pittsburgh Literacy Council. (Want to raise more money for GPLC? Learn more about and register for our Poem-A-Thon here: http://www.flashbangwritingstudio.com/poem-a-thon/)

To submit: Send an email with your poem attached as a Word document or just pasted into the body of the email to flashbangwritingATgmailDOTcom. Please include your name, age, and school name in your submission. (School names will not be published unless you explicitly ask us to do so.) Let us know where you heard about us, too. Deadline for consideration for KaPow! and the NaPoWriMo celebrations is 4/25. BUT we will still consider poems on a rolling basis after that deadline for publication on the blog.

My Chicken

Posted March 23, 2015 & filed under Notebook, Poem, Student Writing.

Cheep cheep cheep

my chicken pokes around

his eyes move fast

his feathers are smooth

I love my chicken

By Stuart, 1st Grade

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Green Day

Posted March 17, 2015 & filed under Notebook, Poem, Student Writing.

imagesI like to play tricks on a green day

like pinch my aunt on the shoulder

and put green eggs in my dog’s bowl

I like to sneak around on a green day

like a leprechaun in the bushes

I like to wear hats on a green day

and listen to the band Green Day

while I wear my lucky green socks

By Jonathan, 3rd Grade

 

Katrina 5

Posted March 12, 2015 & filed under Poem, Student Writing.

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Lwr94JanBentStopsign (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

They can’t prevent me.
I loom above them like a thundercloud.
A cat about to strike
Down upon a defenseless mouse.

The ocean can’t stop me.
Just a hurdle, a centimeter off the ground.
Crushed beneath my feet.
People fleeing, screaming, crying, wailing.

They can’t stop me.
I’ll tear it down.
I’ll tear it all down.

by Lucy, 7th Grade

Poetry Contest for Homeschoolers

Posted March 10, 2015 & filed under Contest, Student Writing.

croppedFrom the HSLDA website:

Poetry Contest 2015

Submission Dates: March 1st through May 1st 2015.

Entries must be postmarked by May 1st. We receive a high volume of entries around this date, so if you submit a poem toward the end of the submission period, please be patient. We will notify you via email when we process your entry!

HSLDA invites homeschooled* students to write a poem based on the theme prompts below. Each student may submit 3 different poems.

Submission Dates: March 1st through May 1st 2015

Entries must be postmarked by May 1st. We receive a high volume of entries around this date, so if you submit a poem toward the end of the submission period, please be patient. We will notify you via email when we process your entry!

HSLDA invites homeschooled* students to write a poem based on the theme prompts below. Each student may submit 3 different poems.

* For the purposes of this contest, an eligible student must have received a majority of his or her education in the past year through home education. The staff and immediate family members of HSLDA and all related entities (PRO, HSF, GenJ) are not eligible to participate in contests sponsored by HSLDA or any of the related entities.

Themes:

Category 1: Ages 7-10 as of April 1st
“Green Eggs and Ham”

Dr. Seuss’s poem “Green Eggs and Ham” has become an American favorite, beloved for its humorous repetition and wacky illustrations.  Read the excerpt below and write a new, creative continuation of this zany poem, picking up right from where the excerpt leaves off!

Assignment: Keep the original rhyme scheme of AABB and keep your poem’s length to no more than 6 quatrains.

Category 2: Ages 11-14 as of April 1st
“Jabberwocky”

In 1871, Lewis Carroll published one of the best known English nonsense poems in his fanciful sequel to Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.  Titled “Jabberwocky,” the poem uses nonsense words and whimsical language to transport Alice and all of its readers to a mythical land where strange creatures dwell. Carroll paints an unreal world using unreal words, but in doing so, he leaves a very real impression of mystery and mythology that brings the story vividly to life in the imagination!

Assignment: Be creative in a similar way: write a poem of similar length (5-7 quatrains) and rhyme pattern (ABAB or ABCB) that takes place in a fun, perhaps mysterious, new world!  Incorporate some of the techniques Carroll used, including made-up vocabulary, neologisms, words with strong visual impact, and rich creativity of expression and idea.

Category 3: Ages 15-19 as of April 1st
“To My Valentine”

With his characteristic humorous flair, American poet Ogden Nash uses unexpected metaphors and atypical expressions to convey his nonetheless powerful love in his poem “To My Valentine.”  Think outside the box to do the same: defy clichés and write a modern-sounding poem that expresses a positive emotion in an uncharacteristic way.  Let your choice of vocabulary, metaphors, examples, theme, and/or the very emotion expressed be laced with originality.

Assignment: Follow Nash’s rhyme pattern (ABAB or ABCB) and keep your poem’s length between 5 and 7 quatrains.

Prizes:

Cash congratulations, plus a wonderful transcript booster!

Visit the HSLDA website for information about how to enter. Good luck!

Guest Post by WITS Writer Gloria Alvarez!

Posted March 5, 2015 & filed under Classroom Reflections, Lesson Plan, Notebook, Student Writing, WITS People.

Mischievians Invade Meadow Wood Elementary!

By Gloria Alvarez

Meadow Wood ElemMy cooperating teachers at Meadow Wood Elementary, Tabitha Peña and Hali House, are the best a WITS writer could ask for:  enthusiastic, supportive, and eager to extend WITS lessons to their own teaching.  We exchange book suggestions, ideas for revision, and strategies for reaching underperforming students.  They open their classrooms to me and work alongside the kids during WITS.

One recent effort so inspired Ms. House that she made it her own.  I’d brought in William Joyce’s The Mischievians, a book about those mysterious creatures swipe TV remotes and cell phones, mislay or devour homework, and generally cause embarrassment and trouble.

We both love Joyce’s work, including Rolie Polie Olie and the Christmas tale Santa Calls.  I’d chosen The Mischievians because it’s so funny: everyone relates to the misplaced iPad or mismatched socks. The illustrations are just as clever.

The story follows a Q & A format: the questions in a child’s voice and the answer like a formal encyclopedia entry.  We read sections of the book, the students brainstormed new Mischievians, and finally they wrote their own questions and answers.

The students completed their drafts and read some aloud.  We will revisit the stories in several weeks to select and revise pieces for our class anthology.  For now, for me, the lesson was over.

But not for Ms. House.  She promptly purchased her own copy of The Mischievians for the classroom and displayed it on an easel at her desk.  Ms. House read their pieces, providing feedback and editing advice.  After allotting class time to revise and recopy their work with illustrations, she created a bulletin board to display all the finished pieces.

“They turned out great,” House said.  “Everyone had fun with it.”

I think so, too.  I was beyond thrilled that a lesson—a new, untested lesson at that—had struck such a chord with both students and teacher.  Here are some samples.

Boy at Meadow WoodThe TalkeyMer TalkyPants Mischievian

By Jonathan

Q: Whenever I’m supposed to be quiet, I whisper to my neighbor.  Then my voice gets louder until I get into trouble.  Why does this happen?

A:  There is a Mischievian on the loose called TalkeyMer, TalkeyPants.

Q: Where are they?

A: There are four of them in your mouth: Down, Up, Right and Left.

Q: How do they make you talk?

A: They jump up and down and make your mouth talk.  Once your mouth is moving, your voice wants to talk.  They jump harder and harder until your voice gets louder.

Some Days I Don’t Know

Posted February 25, 2015 & filed under Notebook, Poem, Student Writing.

windowSome days I don’t know

If I’m inside looking out or outside looking in

If I’m the size of an atom or the size of the universe

If I’m black or if I’m white

Some days I don’t know who I am

By Jacob, 10th Grade