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!

More Bird Stories

Normally when I think of winter birds, I picture cardinals and blue jays and sparrows. But what about seabirds–like the gulls and pelicans and terns. They hang out at the beaches even when the temperature drops.

What do these birds like to eat?
What do they sound like?
Where do they build their nests?
FEEDING THE GULLS by Deanna Calvert might be a fun to read.
Or A DAY AT SEAGULL BEACH by Karen Wallace.
Or SEEING SEABIRDS by Allan Fowler.
Did you know Herring Gulls will eat most anything? They are the ones who will steal your snacks at the beach if you’re not careful.
Could you write a story about a gull who ate too much junk food at the beach and couldn’t fly?
One day when it’s too cold to go outside this winter, pretend you’re the snack-loving gull and write about your misadventures.

Frosty Feathered Friends

This is turning out to be an awfully cold winter.

Lucky for us we can go inside where it’s warm.
The birds and other wildlife don’t have that opportunity, so it’s important they are able to find food to fuel their bodies.
If you can, leave some birdseed out for them. You’ll enjoy watching the variety of birds who come to feast on the tempting treats you’ve provided.
HIGHLIGHTS online magazine has a fun bird quiz you can play. You’ll not only be able to see possible bird visitors to your feeder. You’ll be able to hear them as well.
You can go to the library where you’ll find books on birds, like BACKYARD BIRDS OF WINTER by Carol Lerner. You’ll discover interesting information about the birds visiting your backyard. You can even keep a log of the different birds you see each day. Keep binoculars handy and a camera. Can you snap a shot of one? Or try to draw a picture.
Which ones are your favorites?

Snow Fun in Birmingham

Winter seems to be refusing to let go this year. It recently dealt an icy hand across much of the United States, even down into the South. My brother & sister-in-law, James and Lauri, live in Birmingham, Alabama–which rarely sees snow. But last week they received enough to play in for a short while.

Here are photos of their dog Mandy learning how to roll snowballs and the spirited snowman they all made.
If your area wasn’t dusted with any of the white stuff and you’d like to play with some snowflakes, you can make some of your own. Click on this link from my website to learn how to make paper snowflakes. And when you’re finished, here’s a list of snowy reads.