Friday, March 10, 2017

mooning around

The moon, while ancient, never gets old. 
We never tire, we humans,
of searching the moon:
finding it wherever it is in the sky,
mining its faraway & so close surface for messages,
timing its passages,
assigning it metaphors and meanings
for every night of every day.

In second grade, we study the moon to observe changes over time.  Now, in addition to all the poems ("The New Moon" by Eve Merriam, "Del Ombligo de la Luna" by Francisco X. Alarcon, and my own "The Moon Moves") we already use to enrich our moon study, I can bring in Laura Purdie Salas's If You Were the Moon and, from Elaine Magliaro's collection Things to Do, "Things to do if you are the MOON."

Laura's book came to me a little too late to use as our kick-off this year, but next year, that's what I'll do.  It's that perfect combination: lyrical language connecting personal experience of the moon to each reader and nuggets of concise scientific information. Jaime Kim's friendly illustrations do a lot to clarify the concepts.  A page that many of my students will find really helpful is

Catch and throw.  Catch and throw.
                At night, the moon seems to glow in the sky.  But the moon is made of rock.  Like the
                Earth, it does not create any light.  Instead, the moon "catches" light from the sun
                and "throws" it toward Earth.

Elaine's poem covers some of the same ground (how could it not?), and yet makes the moon new again.  I hope she and illustrator Catia Chien will forgive the amateur photography, but besides wanting to show off the whole gorgeous page, this busy teacher doesn't have time to fight Blogger over the formatting of this perfect poem!

from Things to Do by Elaine Magliaro (Chronicle Books 2016)
Nope, it never gets old, the Moon.  Moon on over to Michelle and Today's Little Ditty for the "round"-up today!


  1. These are perfectly matched. Also, I love these 'Things to Do' poems. I can't believe I hadn't discovered them before. They are a joy of words!

  2. Nope, we never tire of the moon. And we never tire of moon poems either! Thanks for mooning around today, Heidi, and for catching the light of these two books and throwing it back to us. :)

  3. So true! The moon is a friend for life. Such a clever title to your poem. Love it!

  4. Isn't it wonderful to think that people have been staring in wonder at the moon for thousands of years? :)

  5. Such good poems about the moon. I hope your kids write some fun ones of their own.

  6. I've done moon studies with my older students, watching a month's cycle & journaling, writing, sketching about it. I have a lot of moon books, but wish I'd had these in the past. They are indeed gems to have. Happy Birthday, Heidi!

  7. I tried to post a comment, but I think it has disappeared! :-( I believe I said that the moon is a favorite subject of haiku poets.

  8. I love the thought that people all over the world look at the same moon. It sounds like you have gathered many rich resources for your kiddos.

  9. Lovely! It's so great to find something new and fabulous to add to a unit!

  10. I never tire of the moon, it seems as though he offers a bottomless well of wealth for artists to draw from, thanks for your "mooning around" poem!


Thanks for joining in the wild rumpus!