Friday, September 2, 2016

all the world...

...has entered my classroom in the form of 16 children who are, in three cases literally, angels. (I have an Angel, an Angela, and an Angelina!)  This year, in addition to my old favorite Roxaboxen, I began the year with the picture book poem All the World by our friend Liz Garton Scanlon.  This poem (even without the Caldecott Honor illustrations by Marla Frazee) touches the sacred for me, and the way I explained it to the shiny new second-graders sitting on my shaggy green carpet is that it gathers up many small, ordinary things to make us feel one big true thing.  Here's an excerpt.

All the World | Liz Garton Scanlon

Rock, stone, pebble, sand
Body, shoulder, arm, hand
A moat to dig, a shell to keep
All the world is wide and deep.

Hive, bee, wings, hum
Husk, cob, corn, yum!
Tomato blossom, fruit so red
All the world's a garden bed

Tree, branch, trunk, crown
Climbing up and sitting down
Morning sun becomes noon-blue
All the world is old and new
Everything you hear, smell, see
All the world is everything
Hope and peace and love and trust
All the world is all of us

After I read this, there was this long pause, and then Andy (yes, I have an Andy too), raised his hand to say, "That book almost made me cry."  There was reverence in the room.

And that, my friends, is what they are ALL like this year:  full of hope and peace and love and trust, open-hearted and ready.  It's another miracle.

Just in case someone had thought to set this beauty to music, I searched a little and found my way to this, which plays with the end of the book to fit the music but comes out pretty wonderful.

SchoolTube video

Thanks to Liz, and thanks to Penny at A Penny and Her Jots for hosting today, and thanks be to the ebb and flow of the world that every year is different!


  1. That book almost made me cry, too! Children can be wonderful audiences for poetry. So glad you are sharing it with your crew.

  2. That book is what made me fall in love with LGS who eventually became a teacher and friend. I'm so lucky to live in the same city as a talent like Liz!

  3. I was a little bug on your rug as I read this post. Lovely book. Thanks for sharing.

  4. A meaningful way to start the year. So happy to see you surrounded by angels. Spread the love.

  5. I can see those lovely kiddos on that green carpet. A garden bed of sorts. Happy beginning of the year with your angels!

  6. Love, love, love this book. I just used it in a workshop I taught. It's amazing!

  7. Love this book, love the video, and love that you have yourself 16 miracle children, Heidi!

  8. Second grade?! When did that happen?

    And yes, I adore this book too, but the teacher in my wants the details!

  9. Heidi, can I be in your class pretty please? Lucky lucky kids. xo

  10. Ahh...thanks for reminding me of this lovely, lovely book. I'll put it in my box for #classroombookaday.

  11. Bravo! What a wonderful (and angelic) way to begin a year of school for second graders. Oh, how I wish I had a teacher that had read to me like this. Thank you for the me that wished for you so many years ago.

  12. What a great book! Thank you for opening up your classroom to us as well. I just love hearing all the inspirational teaching moments!

  13. I would say that you and your "shiny second-graders" are off to a wonderful start! Have an amazing year.

  14. Thank you, Heidi, for introducing me and my nest of K-1ers to this book and --bonus!!!!--song on Schooltube. Last year we began our fall mornings with the White Stripes "I Can Tell That We Are Gonna Be Friends"; I am eager to see if this beauty becomes a new anthem.

  15. Love this book and the fact that you shared it with your students at the beginning of the year. They are lucky to have you as their teacher. =)


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