Posts Tagged ‘writing camp’

Poetry Friday round up is hosted by Jama.

Poetry Friday round up is hosted by Jama.

In this wacky wonderful world of the Kidlitosphere, I have met so many awesome writers and teachers and teacher/writers. It becomes an even richer experience when we work together to teach and inspire students. When Leigh Anne Eck tweeted me about Skyping with her summer writing camp, I agreed, of course. I was actually flattered. As the day got closer, I worried that I didn’t have what I needed to adequately teach this workshop. We had a quick email exchange and decided to do haiku. All my books are packed away at school, so I turned to another online friend, Linda Baie. She had written a haiku every day in April and made a catalog of them all on her site. How perfect and convenient! Thanks, Linda!

These were the poems I selected and a few things we talked about.

snow shadows again
blossoms tighten their hold
no open window

(Note the use of the word shadows. Why do blossoms tighten? What does the last line tell you?)

That little boy
digs into warm earth –
wiggle in his hand

(What is in his hand? How do you know? Poets can tell you that it’s a worm without using the word.)

from snow to puddles
mother nature’s pasttime –
trees drink deeply

(What is happening? How do you know? Note the personification of trees. What is a pasttime?)

Following our discussion, we looked at this image from National Geographic. First we collected words and phrases that the students shared. Together we wrote this haiku.

Three pairs of flip-flops.
Shadows of three kids playing.
Puddle reflection.

We pulled up a Google image search of “summer days.” Each student chose their own image to write from. Sacred writing time for about 7 minutes. Then some wonderful sharing time. I had such a good time teaching from my living room, even if it was early in the morning. (two time zones)

I wrote a haiku to an image of daisies. Teachers write, too, during workshop. I borrowed a line from Linda, “no open window,” and made it “open your window.” I talked about how poets get ideas from other poets.

Open your window
Summer daisies are here.
Golden sunshine smiles.
–Margaret Simon


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Join the Tuesday Slice of Life

A writing exercise that is often successful for me is to borrow a line. I have done this a number of times to jump start a poem. See The Day, Fallen Oak and also in the poem from the 30 Day Challenge Blackberry Time.

Last week my writing partner, Stephanie, led a writing camp. She used this exercise with the students. I joined them on Wednesday for their writing marathon. It turned into a virtual writing marathon due to rain, but we managed to spend time visiting different places (through pictures) and responding with writing. Stephanie posted pictures on the kidblog she set up for the camp. For one of the pictures, her prompt was an Emily Dickinson poem and a picture of a mountain waterfall with the sun bursting over the hillside. For some, the picture led the poem. For others, Emily Dickinson’s words. Later in the week, the students were asked to find a favorite poem and “steal a line.” While we instruct them on plagiarism and the correct way to credit the original author, this activity is often successful. Somehow it breaks through the barrier of “I can’t write,” and leads to deeper creativity.

Here are a few samples from the writers at Write Your Way Camp 2012:

From Sophia with a borrowed line from Emily Dickinson

I’ve heard it in the chillest land,
and stories of this place.
Its beauty just lights up my eyes,
and fills the land with grace.
I see the mountains, puffy clouds,
and greatly blinding sun.
But in some time,
I will realize,
That my journey’s just begun.

From Matthew with Emily Dickinson
Hope is the thing with feathers,
hope is the thing with fur,
hope is the thing that rises the sun,
hope is the thing that purrs.

Kaylie with a borrowed title by Joe Fazio.
This is… Our Life

This is the game we play,
start at the beginning of the day,
run in circles, having fun in the sunny rays.
Lie down in the dewy grass,
wait for the day to pass.
Go back home and start again.
I know you’ll be there tomorrow, my friend.

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