Problems

Posted October 24, 2013 & filed under Notebook.

I’ve got problems

with Halloween

I can’t ever decide

what I want to be

I mean, I want to

be Spiderman

AND a cowboy

AND a buffalo

AND SpongeBob.

My brain is fried

and I haven’t

even started

eating candy yet.

By Thomas, 3rd grade

Orange and Black

Posted October 31, 2012 & filed under Notebook.

When I bite into an orange, the juice tickles my tongue.
Cockroaches crawl in the dark corners.

Pumpkins grow in big, beautiful pumpkin patches.
Bats fly in caves like the wind.

I see goldfish swimming in beautiful ponds.
The sky at night makes my eyes twinkle.

When I have a bite of tomato soup, it soothes my throat.
Licorice is my favorite candy of them all.

Tony the Tiger has the best cereal I’ve tasted.
Cows’ spots are the darkest shade of black I’ve ever seen.

Cheetos are the best chips I’ve eaten.
Car wheels speed down the long, black road.

When the sun sets, it is always the best time of the day.
I do the best tap dance with my tap shoes in my house.

Ronald McDonald’s hair is a very dark shade of red.
When I pick up dirt with my hands, it makes my fingers stick together.

Doxorubicin drips slowly into the IV to kill my cancer cells.
I have the best handwriting on a chalk board.

Carrots are my favorite type of vegetables.
I see black cats running to my house on Halloween night.

by Emily, 2nd grade
Texas Children’s Cancer Center

Happy Halloween!

Posted October 31, 2011 & filed under Notebook.

Picking perfect pumpkins

out of a sea of orange

carving a wicked smile

and lighting it with a candle

The sun is down now

the moon shining white

all my friends dressed up

like the Green Lantern

and Spiderman

Soon we’ll have bags full

of lollipops, gum, and

candy, candy, candy

This holiday is my dream

come true

By Ethan, grade 4

Orange and Black

Posted October 31, 2008 & filed under Notebook.

When I bite into an orange, the juice tickles my tongue.
Cockroaches crawl in the dark corners.

Pumpkins grow in big, beautiful pumpkin patches.
Bats fly in caves like the wind.

I see goldfish swimming in beautiful ponds.
The sky at night makes my eyes twinkle.

When I have a bite of tomato soup, it soothes my throat.
Licorice is my favorite candy of them all.

Tony the Tiger has the best cereal I’ve tasted.
Cows’ spots are the darkest shade of black I’ve ever seen.

Cheetos are the best chips I’ve eaten.
Car wheels speed down the long, black road.

When the sun sets, it is always the best time of the day.
I do the best tap dance with my tap shoes in my house.

Ronald McDonald’s hair is a very dark shade of red.
When I pick up dirt with my hands, it makes my fingers stick together.

Doxorubicin drips slowly into the IV to kill my cancer cells.
I have the best handwriting on a chalk board.

Carrots are my favorite type of vegetables.
I see black cats running to my house on Halloween night.

by Emily, 2nd grade
Texas Children’s Cancer Center

Fear

Posted October 28, 2008 & filed under Notebook.

Fear is the monster under your bed.
It is the deepest darkest hole.

Fear is the all alone,
Shaking of you.

Fear is the howling of a canine,
At the dead of night.

Fear is your meaning,
That everybody thinks about.

Fear is the jumpy alertness
You get from your darkest secrets.

Fear is a hawk swooping down on a mouse
That is not expecting it.

By Michael, 6th grade
[photo by stuant63 via flickr]

Halloween Poem

Posted October 7, 2008 & filed under Notebook.

Black Cat

The witches screech
the pumpkins gloom
the black cat sleeks
silently through the dark
the ghosts glow in the night
the zombies stomp around
the black cat sleeks silently
through the dark

the werewolves growl
the goblins moan
the black cat sleeks silently
through the dark

by Valerio, 2nd Grade

Haiku

Posted October 6, 2008 & filed under Notebook.

I looked at the moon.

A spider was eating flies,

Then he rushed through time.

By Luis, 3rd grade

[photo by DanieVDM via flickr]

Ghost, Writing

Posted April 24, 2008 & filed under Notebook.

When I was a child, I loved watching TV programs such as “In Search Of…” and “Ripley’s Believe It or Not!” Each one tantalized me with stories of impossibility. While I wasn’t entirely sure that I believed in, say, the Loch Ness Monster or ghosts, the very idea of these creatures ignited my imagination. In fact, I wrote an embarrassing number of unicorn poems when I was in junior high.

I find that many children share that fascination with the mysterious, carrying on the age-old tradition of swapping ghost stories at slumber parties or daring each other to summon Bloody Mary in the bathroom mirror.

Recently, I decided to capitalize on this interest in improbable creatures by asking my students to write poems from the point of view of a being or creature that most people say does not exist. Students suggested a great list of possible subjects they could speak for, including ghosts, Bigfoot, mermaids, elves and La Llorona.

The idea of writing from another being’s point of view is intriguing; you must convincingly capture the voice and ideas of someone or something completely outside your normal range of experience. I emphasized to my students that these poems must be a way for these beings to help us humans understand their lives. These could be greatly detailed, such as descriptions of the lengths a rather annoyed Bigfoot must go in order to keep away odious humans that want to pester him, or simple, such as Margaret Atwood’s “This is a Photograph of Me,” written from the point of view of what seems to be a ghost.

Here is one student’s response to the assigment:

Martian

why must people be scared
why can’t they see me
maybe because I’m just made of sand
I will walk till I find out what’s wrong
the Mars Rover will someday be found
I will be known
I will be found
I will meet the people at last
they will know about me
I will meet the water the Earthlings have
I will not just be sand and dust
I will be water and life

by Caroline, 3rd grade

[“ghost” photo by Daniel Schwabe via flickr]

posted by Tria Wood, Writers in the Schools

The Sad Little Pumpkin

Posted October 29, 2007 & filed under Notebook.

pumpkin.jpgI lament Halloween.
I lament having to sit around in a field all day.
I lament having to get picked up and go to a place that’s new.
I lament having to be carved into a jack-o-lantern
and having to sit on a porch for a week.
I lament having to have a torch lit in me.
I lament sitting here while kids go trick-or-treating
wearing silly costumes.
I lament watching kids come out of houses with sacks full of candy
and watching them come home looking happy.
I lament seeing the little kids eat their candy.
I lament being a pumpkin.
I lament Halloween.

Andrew, Meadow Wood Elementary School
(photo by taitornator via Flikcr.com)