Monday, March 22, 2010

As Quiet as

Last week we read the book, Quick as a Cricket, by Audrey Wood. We have used her work to inspire us as we write poetry. A couple of days later we talked about what we are working toward when we center ourselves for our quiet settling in time at the beginning of the school day. We brainstormed comparisons for quiet as, peaceful as, and calm as. Looking at our list, I chose one, as peaceful as a lamb, to model how to stretch it out to make it a fuller image. Drawing ideas from the students, I added to our simple simile. "As peaceful as a lamb" became "as peaceful as a lamb sleeping on soft hay in a grassy field." Then each student worked with a partner to stretch out some of the other comparisons from our list. They came up with some lovely images, which we will make into a book and illustrate together.

As quiet as a cloud floating in the blue, blue sky.
As calm as a bird in a nest at the top of the tree at night.
As peaceful as a kitten sleeping in its soft, cozy bed.
As quiet as meditating on a cloud drifting along.
As calm as a butterfly drinking some nectar.
As peaceful as a sky kitten sleeping on a cloud in the sky.
As quiet as a little mouse snug in its warm, cozy home.
As calm as a dove flying over the ocean.
As peaceful as a swan swimming in a beautiful lake.
As quiet as a dark, empty room in an abandoned house.
As calm as a lotus flower bending gently on a windy day.
As quiet as bark on a tree resting in the breeze.
As calm as the ocean on a windless night.
As quiet as a rabbit nibbling on clover in the spring.

Writing Poetry

We have been reading and writing poetry the past few weeks. For my lessons I draw from resources such as Regie Routman's Kids' Poems: Teaching First Graders to Love Writing Poetry (I love her emphasis on reading and talking about poetry by children) and Lucy Calkins and Stephanie Parson's Poetry: Powerful Thought in Tiny Packages, which is part of Units of Study for Primary Writing: A Yearlong Curriculum. I also have lessons of my own that I have developed over the years.

It is an exciting time as we explore this very different way of looking at and writing about the world.