Friday, March 7, 2014

oik friday and the pfa for science

It's been a long while since I OIKed, and usually OIKing happens on Tuesdays, but this week we have a Friday Overheard in Kindergarten moment.  Actually we have more than one!  It's very important to maintain a sense of humor when the weeks are so irregular (our school system has not had a complete week of school since DECEMBER) and when the children are so irregular surprising.  Here are gems from yesterday which are evidence, I like to think, of children learning what I'm teaching:

K.MD.A.1 Describe measurable attributes of objects, such as length or weight. Describe several measurable attributes of a single object:
"Miss Jenson, have you lost waist?"

3.1.C.2a. Examine a variety of living things and their offspring and describe what each parent and offspring looks like (we have been researching turtles particularly):

"Ms. Linney's baby is going to hatch soon!"

and, my personally resonating favorite (from Elmer, a recurring character)--

4.K.B.5 With guidance and support from adults, respond to questions and suggestions from peers and add details to strengthen writing as needed:

"It took me six months not to finish this!"


It took me six months
a lot of weeks at least
to remember what
I wrote

It took me six months
since I was still five
to read my
old words

It took me six months
and again today
to add one more
describing word

It took me six months
not to finish this!
and now tomorrow
I'm finally done!

HM 2014
all rights reserved

I must say that this poem reflects the sorry state of Writing Workshop in my classroom this year.  Something about our funky schedule and the particularities of my class has meant that many, many days our scanty writing time just gets swallowed up by difficult afternoon transitions and the need for a movement break and an unusually large number of kids who don't find a focusing joy in expressing themselves on paper.  I've always taught kids that Writing Workshop is "our favorite time of the day," the most relaxed, self-differentiated activity we do, but we haven't been able muster that habit this year. " It's taken me six months not to finish this..." and it's a mighty disappointment, to tell the truth.

AND YET!  How thrilling that on the same day we have finally arrived at the possibility of publishing our writing, copies of the Poetry Friday Anthology for Science also arrived at my door.  I was able to open the awesome Fourth Grade Student Edition and show my "Cicada Magic" poem right there in a real book, with my name and everything!  And THEY were thrilled and excited for me and for themselves, to actually reach an end point and publish their writing in a finished-looking form.  Deep breath; renewed commitment.

I believe that most regular Poetry Friday participants have poems in this anthology, the delights of which I haven't yet had time to fully savor--but if somehow you haven't heard, do go and look at the riches which are now available for you, your students, your children, your scientist friends, your anybody!

Join Margaret at Reflections on the Teche for PF goodness today and all weekend.


  1. Heidi - I love it when you OIK. And to OIK alongside standards makes me giggle over here! Those little ones are so lucky to have you. And as for writing workshop not feeling the same this year, this seems to be true in many places right now. It is such a transition year. It will feel great again - you're too good. Happy PF, friend!

  2. Heidi, the comments made me smile and I like that poem a lot, its humor and truth. I'm a huge reviser, but I do weigh scales like these you suggest when asked to speak in schools about the process. Does it really help to say it took a year to write one poem, when a year might be a seventh of one person's life? Don't know.

  3. Love the quotes, Heidi! And your poem, too. That may be from a six-year-old's point-of-view, but I can relate to it all too well!

  4. Love your kiddos comments and the poem that Elmer's comment inspired (that final stanza describes my writing process to a tee...)
    Your cicada magic is a gem!

  5. Oh yes, Heidi,
    I love your OIKs. Your children are so lucky to have you for a teacher.
    I absolutely loved your poem in the new Poetry Friday Anthology for Science.
    I love the magic and the song of your CICADA MAGIC. The illustration with your poem is terrific. Well done. Bravo.
    Keep up the great work.

  6. Congrats on your poem in the anthology. Not me, but so many, many others are there from PF. Mine is on the way. I loved the others, am sure it will be good. I enjoyed your kid quotes, Heidi, so funny. With so many of you having such mixed-up weeks, who knows what impact this will have on all the ages of students. Maybe things will settle in soon! Looking forward to our MM time together! Good luck to you, Heidi!

  7. Hi there Heidi, I can imagine how stressful it must be both for teachers and students to miss so much of school because of the weather, and I'm sure they miss their teacher. Love the humor in your poem, thanks for sharing it! Congratulations on your poem in the anthology too!

  8. So often there's a lot of wisdom in those funny "from the mouths of babes" moments! I love how your poem expertly expands and enhances one of those moments! Congrats on your PFA contribution. :)

  9. I am savoring every moment with a group who loves to write! I know that this, too, might fade for a year. And you know that next year might bring you writers.

    Thank you for OIKing on a Friday. I, too, need time to dig into the PFAS book and savor every poem!

  10. Like a little fly on the wall, I love overhearing your precious students. Priceless. The poem you created, too, is precious and funny. Congrats on your poem in the anthology. I need to order mine soon.


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