Click the arrow to hear me read this poem to you.
Students - Today's poem is about the season we are in right now. Spring. When this time of year rolls around in Western New York, we are always very ready for it; winter is long here. And it always feels like there is one magical day when all of the trees mail their leaves to the sky. I notice it every year, and every year I marvel.
Today's poem relies heavily on a technique you may have heard of -- personification. In this verse, I make the trees like people, writing. We know that trees do not write, but in this poem they do. In this poem, they are like people who feel hope and relief and even joy.
The first two stanzas each have an ABCBDB pattern (every other line has the same end rhyme), but the third stanza is shorter. To me, this makes it feel more finished, breaking the pattern and all.
There's a bit of alliteration (same beginning letter repeating) too. Can you find it?
It is an honor today to welcome kindergarten teacher Betsy Hubbard and her kindergarten poets from Fern Parsons Elementary School in Olivet, Michigan. Many of you know Betsy from her warm, rich blog, Teaching Young Writers, and her students' families also know her through her classroom blog, Hubbard's Headlines. Some of you might even remember when Betsy and her students visited The Poem Farm last June with their book, RHYME SCHOOL. Today they share their chalk-a-bration poem, written at the end of April, National Poetry Month. What a fantastic idea! I welcome Betsy and her students....
Photo by Betsy Hubbard
It doesn't take long,
not hard to find a space.
Go get some chalk
and poetry the place!
I began thinking, what if others shared writing underfoot? What if someone, somewhere wrote their favorite poem or an original poem and someone else stumbled upon it? I felt a rush of excitement at the idea of someone’s day getting a smile from shared words. Chalk-A-Bration was born!
Throughout last year, poets, students and my family shared poems and illustrations during the summer months. This year I decided to share the idea with my students again, and we got to work. We went outside with our writer’s notebooks and scoured for ideas. We illustrated our topics and lines as a planning tool and together wrote a shared poem. In partners, students illustrated each line of the poem in chalk outside. We put it all together and had our poem in pictures for everyone to see. It was a great way to celebrate the end of poetry month with kindergartners. Here is our poem in pictures and in words:
by Mrs. Hubbard’s Kindergarten Class
Smelling flowers that smell like lemonade
a red bike
a spiky ball
green grass that grows
hearing owl -- whoo, whoo
a yellow dandelion
a stick shaped like a Y
and those were our senses outside.
About chalk-a-bration, Saige says, "I like doing it (chalk-a-bration) because it is so beautiful, and I like doing the poetry because I get to make my own stories and pictures."
Sophia says, "I like poetry because its fun writing and drawing pictures to go with your writing."
Reagan says, "I like to draw with chalk, it is fun to do things like this with my friends. I love all the colors of things."
Chalk-a-bration is on May 31st, and I am also hosting Poetry Friday that day at Teaching Young Writers! I would invite any and all chalk holders to join in the chalketry celebration. It can be an original poem, a personal favorite, or an illustration to a poem. Anything poemy will do. When you're done getting dusty, post a photo on your blog and link it to teachingyoungwriters.blogspot.com on celebration day! You will be in good company. And, you can even come back on June 30th, July 31st or August 31st to do it again!
Don't you just want to get out and chalk? I do! Remember....May 31 at Betsy's place. Thank you so much to Betsy and these young poets for filling The Poem Farm with joy today.
Today I am guest blogging over at Kirby Larson's blog, Kirby's Lane, a wee bit about writing and the two selves I must be to do so.
Ed DeCaria is hosting today's Poetry Friday party over at Think Kid, Think! Stop by and check out the menu of poetry fun all around the Kidlitosphere this week.
Please share a comment below if you wish.
Like The Poem Farm on Facebook for more poems, articles, and poemquotes!