April 12, 2016

Thursday, May 28, 2015

In Residence: Due Stanze

Welcome back to Northfield Elementary, readers, where I am spending May as the poet-in-residence.

Throwback Thursday:
One of my favorite residency photos.
The third grade poets have practiced word choice (list poems) and figurative language (animal simile poems). Today, we are working building on the list poem and learning about stanzas.

The word "stanza" comes from the Italian word for room. Often, I start this lesson inviting the students on an imaginary walk through my house. They expect to see a plant, some pictures, and maybe a coat rack in the entrance way. There is probably a microwave, stove, and sink in the kitchen. Is there a bed in the kitchen? No! The kitchen is for cooking.

Is it so strange to have a bed in the kitchen?
Design Bug doesn't think so.

We talk about the way the rooms of a house are organized around the purpose of each room. So why are poems organized into "rooms"? Each stanza might have its own purpose or main idea--kind of like a paragraph in prose writing.

The simplest way to teach stanzas is writing opposite poems. You can find a full description of my workshop here.

And this post has a poem-walk of the model poem, "Swift Things Are Beautiful" by Elizabeth Coatsworth.

Now entering la stanza della poesia, please welcome poets Avery,  Setutsi, Jen, Anlan, Arushi, Johanna.

Avery I.

Students and Teachers

A teacher mentors:
She grades worksheets,
possibly creates and gives a test.
A story is what she reads to her students.
Teachers spend lunch alone planning lessons.

A student learns:
You contentedly do a worksheet.
Tests with a million questions may come your way.
A chapter books is read aloud to you.
Students happily eat in the cafeteria with their friends.

Setutsi A.

Good Weather and Bad Weather

Good weather is bright sunshine.
In the night time a beautiful sunset brightens
the sky and hides the moon. Cool, crisp
weather blowing the leaves f one side
to the next. That is when it is not too hot
and not too cold.

Bad weather is rainy dark days
with lightning roaring up in the clouds.
Cold, snowy days, with foggy weather so you
can’t see too well in the distance. Snow is
freezing on your cheeks and ears. It makes
them turn pink.

This rosy-cheeked cutie is graduating
from high school on Saturday.
Congratulations to our Robbie!

Jen T.

Imaginary and Real Animals

Imaginary things are cute.
Unicorns that fly high in the sky.
Dragons breathing fire to burn things down.
Invisible koalas soaring over the town with no one noticing them.
Fish that don’t need water to live.

And real things are cute.
Horses that go galloping through the forest
Birds flying in the sky looking for food.
Koalas climbing in the wild of the forest.
Fish roaming and exploring the ocean.

Anlan L.

Cute and Creepy Animals

Cute animals are cool:
The playing feeling in a dog. The sound
of a cat purring at me. The eyes of
a bird staring at me, and the fur of a hamster
I am stroking.

Creepy animals are cool:
The 8 eyes of a spider
staring at me strongly. The scary hiss
of a cobra. The claws of a lobster pinching loudly,
and the teeth of a shark going up and down.

Arushi A.

Wild and Tamed Animals

Many animals are wild.
Lions pounce on their victims.
Tigers roam around secretly.
Sharks can smell their prey from a mile away.
Eagles soar high above, always watching.

Many animals are tamed.
Dogs light up your mood when you’re sad.
Kittens cuddle up with you beside the fire.
Canaries chirp a sweet song in their cage.
Goldfish wait patiently for their food.

Johanna A.

Extinct and Alive Animals

Things that are extinct are supposed
to be that way, because how would you feel
if a Tyrannosaurus Rex was running around or Spinosaurus,
Gigantosaurus, and Carcharodontosaurus and their pointy
teeth everywhere.

Things that are alive are supposed
to be that way. Then how would you
feel if a rabbit, or deer, or bird, or dog running
around everywhere with their soft hurt.

Read more about Carcharodontosaurus

Thank you to the Northfield ES community for hosting this annual residency. I appreciate having permission to share the third graders' poems.

Readers, the students love hearing feedback from you. Please leave a comment about our opposite poems.

Look for more opposite poems from the Northfield third grade poets tomorrow, Poetry Friday. Addio, poeti!

In Residence is an ongoing series this month. If you missed previous posts:

First Student Responses: "Words in My Pet Goldfish," "Words in My Bed," "Words in My Life"
In Residence: Poetry Friday Words: Poems by Laura S., Jason Y., Jeffrey G., and Isa L.
In Residence: The Simile Zoo: Poems by Sabine S., Asher, Cecelia D., and Evelyn D.
In Residence: Day 2 in the Simile Zoo: Poems by Allie L., Makaela M., Parker P., Matthew L., Vincent T., Lila R., Naomi C., and Julia J.

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