Holiday Poetry

A fun way to celebrate the holiday season for children of all ages is to create poetry. The poetry could be part of a Christmas card greeting, or a decoration to hang on the tree, or just a celebration of the winter season.

For young children, the poem can be a simple free verse phrase or two.
For older children, rhyme and rhythm can be incorporated.
For all, the choice of subjects abounds from wintery scenes, to well-known Christmas themes, or  even end of year reminiscing.

A simple poem exploring a winter scene is Winter Treats, found on my website. Use this poem to encourage children to look outside and describe a scene they see. Can they bring the scene to life with their words?

An example of a Santa poem at Essential Learning Products is Hip! Hip! Hooray! by Beverly McLoughland. This poem could be used with children to jump start their poetry writing. It also could be used as a geography lesson, traveling the globe with Santa.

For a more spiritual poem, read Christmas Day, also found on my website. Have the child find a Christmas card picture or perhaps an ornament that he likes. Then have the child use this image to create a poem in rhyme, free verse, or haiku.

Poetry should be a fun and creative process. There are no rights or wrongs–only writes!


Poems don’t always need to be serious. They can be tons of fun. Here is a light-hearted poem I created today:


My clumsy kitty, Henry,
Today was an acrobat.
He leaped from stair to chair
But landed flat upon his back.

He fluffed his tattered tail out
And twisted to a stand.
I pretended not to see his stunt
And giggled behind my hand.

My Henry is not graceful
Or light upon his four feet,
But he purrs most perfectly
And couldn’t be more sweet.

For more fun poems, look for these books at school or at your local library:

A LIGHT IN THE ATTIC by Shel Silverstein
ALMOST LATE TO SCHOOL: AND MORE SCHOOL POEMS by Carol Diggory Shields and Paul Meisel

Father’s Day Gift Ideas

Father’s Day is fast approaching. Dads love a homemade gifts.

Why not try writing a special poem for your dad?

Remember when we did some ACROSTIC poems here? Try that idea for a Father’s Day poem.

Mega-special map reader.

Yaw-some pancake maker.


Arm wrestler.

Dizzy trampoline jumper.

Inventive homework helper.

Super-duper coach.

Good hugger.

Rainy day game leader.



Totally the very best ever–Dad !!!


Or write a story for your dad. You can make one up–a fiction story. Maybe write how your dad saved the planet from the giant worms from Pluto. This would be a fantasy story because it couldn’t happen in real life.

Or write a fiction story about something silly that could really happen–like your dad deciding to open a pet store, but he ends up with way too many pets and you need to come to his rescue.

Or write a nonfiction story about an adventure that you and your dad shared in real life.

The possibilities are endless. Add your own illustrations too. Dads love that.

Father’s Day is June 21. Get started today and make your dad’s day something special.

Children’s Book Week

Sorry it’s halfway through the week already before I had the chance to remind you about CHILDREN’S BOOK WEEK. Click on the link and you’ll find a great bookmark you can print. 

Since 1919, Children’s Book Week has been celebrated in the United States. Schools, libraries, publishers, bookstores and of course, children enjoy this special week, highlighting books and reading.
Click here if you want to help choose the next Children’s Choice Book Awards
or here to see the 2008 winners’ list.
What great children’s books have I been reading this week?
The title says it all for this poetry how-to book. Discover your inner poet when you take this book out for a spin.
These poems are totally out-of-sight! The author shares some star-worthy poems and gives insight into poetry lingo.
When is a poem also a picture? If you don’t know, you’ll want to dive into this whirl of words.
HOW TO TALK TO YOUR DOG by Jean Craighead George
The author explains dog walk, talk, and body language. You’ll decipher your dog’s messages in a flash. Fun and informative.
HERO CAT by Eileen Spinelli
Don’t miss this sweet picture book highlighting a mother cat’s heroic efforts to save her young kittens from a fire. This book is based on a true story. Both the artwork and writing are wonderful.
OK. Now it’s YOUR turn. What incredible children’s books have you been reading???

Writing Poetry about THE World’s LARGEST Ball of Twine

Okay, have you been doing it?

Writing a new poem every day during POETRY month this April???
I’m so proud of myself. So far (5 whole days) I’ve managed to do it.
My poems are posted among the hundreds of poems (click on Comments)
I’m amazed how much fun it has been–this poetry challenge. 
Mr. Brewer presents a new poetry topic each day.
So far, these are the prompts: origin poem; outsider poem; The problem with ____; animal poem; landmark poem.
Those prompts have helped me create poems on the etymology of “word;” pear tree blossoms;problems; a robin; and THE WORLD’S LARGEST BALL OF TWINE, in Kansas anyway. 
Now it’s your turn to try writing poetry.
Remember, poems don’t have to rhyme. 
Free verse poems are very close to regular talking–only you can break up the words and phrases the way you want to. 
And you can use zinger words–words that pack a punch. Words that sound special or mean something special or make people almost smell something or see something special.
And poems don’t have to be serious either. Read some of Robert Lansky’s silly poems at GIGGLE POETRY.  Be sure and check out his POETRY CLASS where he shows you how to write all different types of poetry. I’ve highlighted some of them in the paragraph above. 
Henry, my yellow and white kitty,(see photo at the top) suggested a poetry prompt you can try for today: CATS.
And he wanted to let you know that he, and Herman & Holly are featured today at Mayra Calvani’s blog: “PETS and AUTHORS.”

Lincoln’s Poetry

Happy Birthday, President Lincoln!

Many people know that February 12 is Abraham Lincoln’s birthday, but many don’t know how much President Lincoln enjoyed poetry–both reading and writing it. A wonderful site to visit to learn more about the poetry he loved to read and some examples of poetry that he wrote can be found at The Library of Congress
President Lincoln wrote many of his speeches with poetic flourish. THE GETTYSBURG ADDRESS is a wonderful example of his mastery of words and emotions. Click on the link above to view copies of the powerful speech. Follow this link to see a photograph of Lincoln at Gettysburg.
Many writers wrote poems about President Lincoln as well. Paul Laurence Dunbar, one of the first African-American poets to gain recognition in the United States, wrote a special poem about Lincoln. Dunbar compares Lincoln to Homer, from the famous Greek play–The Illiad and the Odyssey.
Why not try writing your own poem about President Lincoln. That would make a very special present for a very special President.