Poetry Thursday (brought to you by Casey)

Casey’s language arts assignment this week (and last) taught him about writing poetry. He learned about imagery, figurative language, and how to use sensory details, personification, etc., to draw the reader into the poem. We use Sonlight’s Core G and I’ve been pretty hands off with his language arts, letting him walk through the lessons and activities on his own. But this week, when his assignment included writing a poem himself, I knew that if I didn’t push him along a little bit, he might not even attempt it. I know from experience that poetry assignments are difficult, motivationally speaking, but if you can just get started, they can be fun.

I would like to share with you a few handy tips for getting your ten year old boy to write poetry.

But I don’t have any.

I had to apply what I would call “gentle pressure.” I hovered a lot and talked about how to structure the poem and then he took it from there.

Also — I told him he couldn’t eat until he finished the poem.

You should probably just use whatever works in your house — threatening starvation may not work for you.

Without further ado, Frolicking Flamingo proudly presents . . . a poem.

By Casey.


                                                                                   The Egret

In a puddle large and brown,

Hunts a dog as black as night.

No one knows what he wants to find,

But he stays and sneaks all day.

Now an egret swoops in silently.

Her beak is yellow like the sun.

The shadowy stalker sits and watches

His unsuspecting prey.

In a flash, the dog strikes,

Streaking across the field.

But the Egret continues to fish.

She waits until the very last moment

Then flees into the air.

The dog pounces, but falls into the mud.

He furiously barks at the bird

Flying away into the sky.


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  1. Very nice Casey!

  2. I shared this poem with my boys and they thought it was awesome. My older boys think my bird-poetry selections this year have just reeked of cutesiness. They think Casey might have actually improved on the story a little by letting the dog catch the egret but I explained the subtle humor would be lost then. We use Rod and Staff for English and I love the thorough, systematic, wholesome, simplicity of it. But the other day my oldest threw the book down in frustration and exclaimed, “Ugh! Why do they never speak of violence!” So then I had to explain the whole Mennonite/pacifist thing which they just didn’t understand at all. Boys! Anyway, great poem, Casey!

  3. Do you give grades in homeschooling? If so, it’s definitely an A++++. I could see the scenario playing out with Campbell as the looser!

  4. Richard Nichols says:

    I believe the best way to learn poetry is by reading what I learned many years ago, was to write “free verse.” I never could write free verse , because I wanted the ending of the sentences to rhyme. I know there are rules concerning the writing poetry, and it appears Casey has mastered it. I don’t know why you are surprised because he masters about everything he attempts. Good job Casey!
    Pop Pop.

  5. WOW! Very impressive Casey!!!

  6. Casey humbly accepts all of your compliments by saying, “WHAT!?! YOU POSTED THAT ON YOUR BLOG???”

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