Friday, April 29, 2016

Overcoming the Monster

Recently in Reading Workshop we have been discussing the meaning of the lyrics in the song The Monster by Eminem. In this song, he relates the struggles he has facing himself and his doubts. We studied the lyrics and looked at this from the standpoint of the poetic voice.

Students final assignment is to compare this to their own life and how they overcome.


Thursday, April 28, 2016

Need a Pun?



Image from @thefunnyworld.

Monday, April 25, 2016

Monday




Image from @Fin_1stFootball

The Test

The Test

By David L. Harrison

It's not my fault
if I flunked the test.
This room's too cold
To do my best.
My foot's asleep,
I've lost my gum,
I've got a fever,
This pencil's dumb,
My collar's tight
There's pain in my head,
I couldn't hear
A thing you said,
My throat is sore,
I need a drink,
And . . .
What's that? You say I passed the test?
Well, if I do say so, I did my best.


The Test is from Somebody Catch My Homework available HERE.

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Here They are in Poetry


One day in class, as we were working on poetry, I just had to write about Cade. And then I wrote another poem about another student, and this post just started to grow.


A Cade Kind of Guy
A funny little guy
that makes people laugh
Sometimes for no reason
other than weird little comments
that he slides in there
like a base runner
coming home
No cheers for him
but lots of smiling teammates

The Noise of Issac
blah, blah, blah
yack, yack, yack
hum, hum, hum
buzz, buzz, buzz
rrrr, rrrr, rrrr
ring, ding, ding
clack, clack, clack

Quiet Karly
So quiet in class,
almost never a sound
always with a smile
but never a frown

Working away
almost never at rest
a teacher's dream
giving her best

A mind always thinking
almost never shared
wonder what she'd say
if ever she dared

Who is Wylie?
Layer upon layer
so many people
in one young girl
Deep in ways
so uncommon so young
Understanding of others
seeing the good in all

Goodness of Garret
Soft-heated and kind
others first on his mind
Treats everyone with care
friendly everywhere

Following a role
of never hurting a soul
Always standing tall
as a leader to all

Ryan's and His Hair



Zoe

DRAMA
friendly smile
DRAMA
good reader
DRAMA
nice
DRAMA
always involved
DRAMA
likeable


Be Nice Like Bryce

Always friendly
Always says hello
Always smiles
Always laughs
Always nice
Always positive
Not always hard working


Corbin
Poem suspended for fighting
(it's a shame because he's really a nice guy)

Deanne
shy
quiet
inaudible
hushed 
noiseless

Hallie
A student came to school
with not much to say
but paying attention
Then the writing assignments began
and amazing ability
from an analytical mind
leapt out
and I realized sixth grade
was just a step
in an amazing future


Annie Climbed the Mountain
                                                                She was successful!
                                                         No more study table.
                                                Her grades improved drastically.
                                        She made up all of her missing work.
                                 She began working very hard.     
                          She chose to be successful.
                    Then she decided to change.
               She was in trouble every day.
          Her grades were awful.
     She didn't do her work.
She started at the bottom.

The Change of Matthew
So so quiet and very shy
Not even enough nerve to say hi
Scared of new teachers and his class
Feelings ready to shatter just like glass

Many months later, hand's always in the air
Laughing and talking with never a care
Joking around, smiles for all
A really great guy, standing tall.


Renasha

Helps everyone
Especially giving
Loves to make people happy
Puts others first
Full of kindness
Unusually quick to assist
Lots of good in Renasha

Camo Will
wearing his camo jacket
blending in with the crowd
not wanting to be noticed
with so much to show
but staying hidden

Always Kailey
Always working hard
Always smiling
Always friendly
Always caring
Always giving her best
Always trying
Always nice to everyone
She's always Kailey

Madison's New Home School
Came from a disaster
two years home schooled
No school building
No classmates
No friends
No work
No success
Just her and the computer

Came to Salt Creek
here in sixth grade
An old building
Lots of classmates
Lots of friends
Lots of work
Lots of success
And made it her new home school


Two Sides to Kaleigh?
She's so so quiet
with almost nothing to say
Never raises her hand
or volunteers in any way

Then I saw her that time
going crazy at the dance
all over the floor
I watched her prance

Sometimes conversation seems
like such a chore
but I can see inside
there's so much more

One day she jumping jacked
with hop after hop
while the whole class watched
until I made her stop.

I've been studying her
for this whole year
and somehow I know
the shyness will disappear.

The quiet side
will someday go
and the outgoing Kaleigh
will forever show.

Jonathon has Heart
When I         think of 
 Jonathon,     I think of  
heart. He is kind and he 
likes people. He smiles 
all the time, and he 
shows  people 
how much
he cares
about
them




Josie's Smile
the nicest smile
always on her face
the best kind
that comes from inside
showing she cares
and that you matter
causing people to smile
and feel so special
on the inside 
from the nicest smile

The Friendship of Ella and Brooke
Twins but not sisters

Making each other
Strong and successful 
Sharing laughs
Whispered conversations
Grins of understanding
That only happens 
with the best of friends

Sydney's Story
Like an iceberg
not the cold part
she's plenty warm
but the little seen part
just a small bit showing
but so much more
beneath the surface

Be Like Bryce
Hello Mr. McGuire,
he says with a smile
How are you, Mr. McGuire?
he says with a smile
whatever he says
he says with a smile
It seems real nice
to be like Bryce







 

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Casey at the Bat

Casey at the Bat
by Ernest Thayer

The Outlook wasn't brilliant for the Mudville nine that day:
The score stood four to two, with but one inning more to play.
And then when Cooney died at first, and Barrows did the same,
A sickly silence fell upon the patrons of the game.

A straggling few got up to go in deep despair. The rest
Clung to that hope which springs eternal in the human breast;
They thought, if only Casey could get but a whack at that -
We'd put up even money, now, with Casey at the bat.

But Flynn preceded Casey, as did also Jimmy Blake,
And the former was a lulu and the latter was a cake;
So upon that stricken multitude grim melancholy sat,
For there seemed but little chance of Casey's getting to the bat.

But Flynn let drive a single, to the wonderment of all,
And Blake, the much despis-ed, tore the cover off the ball;
And when the dust had lifted, and the men saw what had occurred,
There was Jimmy safe at second and Flynn a-hugging third.

Then from 5,000 throats and more there rose a lusty yell;
It rumbled through the valley, it rattled in the dell;
It knocked upon the mountain and recoiled upon the flat,
For Casey, mighty Casey, was advancing to the bat.

There was ease in Casey's manner as he stepped into his place;
There was pride in Casey's bearing and a smile on Casey's face.
And when, responding to the cheers, he lightly doffed his hat,
No stranger in the crowd could doubt 'twas Casey at the bat.

Ten thousand eyes were on him as he rubbed his hands with dirt;
Five thousand tongues applauded when he wiped them on his shirt.
Then while the writhing pitcher ground the ball into his hip,
Defiance gleamed in Casey's eye, a sneer curled Casey's lip.

And now the leather-covered sphere came hurtling through the air,
And Casey stood a-watching it in haughty grandeur there.
Close by the sturdy batsman the ball unheeded sped-
"That ain't my style," said Casey. "Strike one," the umpire said.

From the benches, black with people, there went up a muffled roar,
Like the beating of the storm-waves on a stern and distant shore.
"Kill him! Kill the umpire!" shouted someone on the stand;
And its likely they'd a-killed him had not Casey raised his hand.

With a smile of Christian charity great Casey's visage shone;
He stilled the rising tumult; he bade the game go on;
He signaled to the pitcher, and once more the spheroid flew;
But Casey still ignored it, and the umpire said, "Strike two."

"Fraud!" cried the maddened thousands, and echo answered fraud;
But one scornful look from Casey and the audience was awed.
They saw his face grow stern and cold, they saw his muscles strain,
And they knew that Casey wouldn't let that ball go by again.

The sneer is gone from Casey's lip, his teeth are clenched in hate;
He pounds with cruel violence his bat upon the plate.
And now the pitcher holds the ball, and now he lets it go,
And now the air is shattered by the force of Casey's blow.

Oh, somewhere in this favored land the sun is shining bright;
The band is playing somewhere, and somewhere hearts are light,
And somewhere men are laughing, and somewhere children shout;
But there is no joy in Mudville - mighty Casey has struck out.

Need a Rhyme

Rhymezone

So what do you do when you need to rhyme?  How about going to Rhymezone?  When you are writing a poem and you need a word bank to help you, Rhymezone is a great resource.  All you do is type in the word and it gives you a bunch of choices.  Don't forget though, a poem still has to make sense and be meaningful.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Angry

Angry
by Sara Holbrook

You can't hold me
angry, angry,
When I'm angry
angry, angry.
There's no comfort
in your touching when I'm mad.

If you talk to me, I'll fight you.
If you reach for me, I'll bite you,
'cause I'm angry,
'cause I'm angry,
'cause I'm mad.

Though at first it wasn't you,
I was mad, but not at you,
till you held me,
or you tried,
to push my mad aside.
I'm a raging storm inside.
You can't hold me
and you tried.
Now I'm angry 'cause you tried.

Now I'm angry with an anger
you can't hold and I can't hide,
angry, angry
angry, angry.
Can't control me,
angry, angry.
You can't hold me,
angry, angry.
So don't try.

The poem is from the book, I Never Said I Wasn't Difficult. You can buy it HERE
Image from epicnewsezine.com.

Rewrite Your Poetry

Take a piece of advise from Lee Bennet Hopkins in his poem titled, Dear Poet. Take one of your drafts, Reading Workshop students, copy it twice, and write three versions.

Dear Poet,

Do you want
to write a poem?

Forget it . . .
until
you have
rewritten it.

Make your poem
stronger
by
not
writing a poem

but
rewriting it
and
rewriting it
and
rewriting it

until--

what you
have
is
a poem
like
no
other
poet
has
ever
written--

or

rewritten--

before!

Poem from Seeing the Blue Between compiled by Paul Janeczko.

Friday, April 15, 2016

Impose Your Will



Celebrate Poetry

 In Reading Workshop we are celebrating National Poetry Month. Students are reading and writing poems. Many will be shared on their blogs. Today's poems are inspired by Donald Graves from his book, Baseball, Snakes, and Summer Squash. These poems tell of the trials of growing up.



Thursday, April 14, 2016

These Amazing Kids

I have sat and watched sixth grade students take tests this week. All I can say is that I am amazed. The work ethic and effort I have witnessed is unbelievable. Students gave everything they had to do their best. As a teacher it is humbling to see such effort. I am so glad to have had the chance to spend the year in language arts with these students.

The MAP Test measures students' growth throughout the school year and the scores were through the roof. Students took the first MAP test in September. It projected a score that they should achieve by the end of the year. Over 92% of the Reading Workshop students exceeded the projected score and most were much higher than projected.

If I was in charge of schools, I would put an immediate end to testing. I know it serves a purpose, but there are better ways to evaluate students, teachers, and schools. Unfortunately, testing controls education today. I guess this points even more towards what a remarkable event I witnessed this week. 

No one in schools likes testing, and especially not students. Considering this, the drive and determination I watched this week will be something I will remember always. And even more important, this strength of character will lead these students to unimagined successes down the road.

Great job Reading Workshop students!

Monday, April 11, 2016

Spoken Word Poetry

Ms. Woerner shared this video today in Reading Workshop. Taken from the famous basketball movie, Coach Carter, it has an excellent example of Spoken Poetry.





Timo Cruz:

Our deepest fear
is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear
is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light, not our darkness
that most frightens us.
Your playing small
does not serve the world.
There is nothing enlightened
about shrinking
so that other people
won't feel insecure around you.
We were all meant to shine
as children do.
It's not just in some of us;
it's in everyone.
And as we let our own light shine,
we unconsciously
give other people permission
to do the same.
As we are liberated
from our own fear,
our presence automatically
liberates others.

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Bad Poem




This poem is from the book Seeing the Blue Between available HERE.

Here's a Few Poem Titles

Weird Students
Mismatched Socks
Riding Vader (My Horse)
I Ate Too Much Chocolate
Cheesy Biscuits and Garlic Breath
Hard Workers
Eli is Not So Shy Any More
Just Plain Megan
Cafeteria Noise
Why Do You Make Me Have to be Mean?
The General aka Mrs. Hardin
Frank the Tank (Kaminsky)
Frank Gets Class
Rainy School Days
Zoom aka Carter
Zoom Thinks He's a Super Hero
The Last Class Was Boring
It Was All My Fault
I was Boring
We Were Still Asleep
Last Night I Had Bad Dreams
Why Does Tacey Work So Hard?
Distracting Class
Off Topic
Writing
World Hunt
I Hate to Lose
My Truck Got Washed Today
I Want to Cry
Not
720 Classes in a Year
My Heart's a Stereo
I Want to Be the Next American Idol
Everybody Now, Slide to the Left
Courage Enough to Write
My Diet Starts Next Monday
Grandma Has Gas
Talk Less, Write More
Afraid of Poetry
Dreams, Desire, Dedication, and Dish Washing
My Chucks Have Blue Shoestrings
Whining Instead of Working
Flo Rider (I Cry)
Music Makes Me Think
Are We Going to Sing Today and Other Questions Students Ask Every Day
Can I Go to the Bathroom?
How Many Topics Should I List?
Is This OK?
Allison Got Her Name on the Sign
Seriously, Aren't you a Little Sick of Cats Because I Am
Alexis, Allison, and Ashton
Earn a Brave Buck
A Little Less Cry and a Lot More Effort
My Sense of Humor is Underappreciated
Nose Pickers
Eddie's Hair
Take a Load Off Fannie
Morning Announcements
It's For not Fur
Red Card
You Can't Have My List
I Wonder What You Don't Know That I Don't Know
A Spot in Time and It's Not a Dalmation
Spaghetti Face
I Hate Sporks

Image from www.mycutegraphics.com