Monday, September 16, 2013

Snake Sheds - What's On Your Desk?

Complete Snake Shed Found by Henry
Photo by Amy LV

Click the arrow to hear me read this poem to you.

Students - This photograph is of a snake shed that our son Henry found outside.  It's a special one because it's all in one piece.  You can even see the eye holes!

Eye Holes Close Up
Photo by Amy LV

I didn't know what I would write about this morning, but I knew that I wanted to write something.  So I sat myself down at my desk, looked up, and there it was: this snake shed. Immediately, I began writing the first few words, and immediately I knew that the poem would be long and skinny just like a snake.  This is called a concrete poem, where the shape of the words matches the meaning of the poem.

At first, this poem was going to be a poem about Medusa, my husband's high school class snake.  The other week, Mark had his school picture taken with Medusa (Dusy) around his neck.  She is shedding her skin right now too, and well...maybe I just have snakes on the brain.

Dusy Sheds in September and Hope says, 
"Wow! It looks like Dusy Exploded!"
Photo by Mark LV

Bio Note from Mark VanDerwater, Science Teacher:  Bio note: each eye is covered by its own single scale that is embedded in the rest of the snakes skin (kinda like goggles) and explains why they don't blink.

One thing I'm realizing is that the more interesting things I have around me, the more interesting poems I can write.  Last Friday I wrote about acorns, today a snake shed. Collecting objects helps me to write.

What neat objects do you place in your writing space?  What do you keep nearby that inspires you?  Teachers - what beautiful or curious or fascinating objects might you bring in or invite students to bring in to school?  Here is a beautiful book about keeping a nature table; I may have mentioned it before.

You can read about snake sheds here at wiseGEEK and watch a snake shed its skin below.

Dan Bailey shares his musical notebooks at Sharing Our Notebooks, and today is the last day to enter the giveaway of a musical notebook!

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  1. Amy,
    I am terribly afraid of snakes. Even their skins give me the creeps, but I love your skinny concrete poem, especially the word sequin. I will share this post with my boy students who have a fascination with snakes. One wrote about the way snakes see. Have you read it yet? Quite funny, I think. Scroll down to Matthew's poem:

  2. Wonderful to see your snaky poem, Amy. I have nature things in a lot of places. Ingrid knows how much I like rocks, so she's been bringing me a "pretty" rock each time she comes to visit. Fun, fun to start her looking at nature's gifts! Thanks for sharing about Mark's snake too. I had an ass't a few years ago who was a snake rescuer, an brought her big snakes to school often. It was quite a sight to see the kids at the computers with a snake draped around their necks! Wow-you brought some memories today!

  3. Another gem, Amy--sleek, simple and elegant, just like a snake. I can appreciate snakes from afar, but like Margaret, I don't care for them up close. It would be a phobia if they popped up in any more often in my life!

    I enjoyed learning that Mark is a science teacher--hadn't known that--and that Henry is a naturalist.

  4. Great find by Henry! I had a number of snake experiences when I was a kid. Never saw one of these, though. (Nice poem, too!)