Monthly Archives: April 2014

last week I was walking in the sunrise

 

 

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Last week I was walking in the sunrise early morning and this week I am walking in the morning light.   Check out my photos below.

How do you get to school? What do you see? What verbs would you use? Show me your journey in a poem. Every day you might see different things like I do and then the same things (even they can change and surprise you).

Try writing a poem about getting to school.  Send it to me if you like.

 

DEADLINE for your On the way to School Poem Challenge: Wednesday April 16th

Send to paulajoygreen@gmail.com. Include your name, year, age and name of school. You can include your teacher’s name and email. PLEASE say it’s for the On the way to School Poem Challenge.

I will post my favourites and have a book prize for one poet.

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a bicycle on the beach is a very strange thing

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Yesterday when I was at the beach I saw this surprising thing — someone riding a  bicycle on the beach. That deserves a poem but I am too busy over the next two weeks to write it  ….

…. so maybe you could write it for me!

The cyclist had his black dog running along too! It must be HARD work cycling in the sand. But he went F A S T !

You can see our dog Molly with the white tipped tail checking it out! She is surprised. She is used to horses on the beach but not bikes.

You can use my story and you can invent bits of your own!

 

DEADLINE for your Bicycle-Poem Challenge: Wednesday April 16th

Send to paulajoygreen@gmail.com. Include your name, year, age and name of school. You can include your teacher’s name and email. PLEASE say it’s for the Bicycle-Poem challenge.

I will post my favourites and have a book prize for one poet.

A poem as a gift

Last night I made a little speech for Carole Beu at The Women’s Bookshop for their 25th Anniversary. The enormous room (it was like six rooms really) was packed with people so I felt nervous. I felt even more nervous as I couldn’t decide what to give her. In the end I had a written a poem as my gift— something I have hardly ever done before.

But I decided this is a lovely thing to do. So my challenge for you is to try writing a poem as a gift for someone. It might be for your mum or dad or grandparent, or your best friend, or your teacher, for a birthday or a special celebration day.

Whenever my girls made me things it was very special.

Write the title of the poem and then underneath write who it is for. This is how my poem started:

Book

for Carole Beu

You open a book

and you open

out into the width

of the world.

 

You could save your poem and give it to the person, or save it for the right time (their birthday, a special day).  If you like you can send it to me and I will post some of my favourites. The poem might be about the person (what you love about them) or about something they love. My poem for Carole was about reading as that is one of the things she loves.

 

DEADLINE for your Gift Poem Challenge: Friday April 11th April

Send to paulajoygreen@gmail.com. Include your name, year, age and name of school. You can include your teacher’s name and email. PLEASE say it’s for the Gift Poem Challenge.

Purrs, Paws & Claws and some of your nursery rhymes filled to the brim with C A T S !

What a lot of fun you had filling nursery rhymes with C A T S ! I loved reading all the poems you sent and in a hard job choosing a few to post. Daniel did THREE fabulous poems that were GREAT to read aloud. And Gemma‘s had pzzazz running through her verses. I thought Ewen‘s was especially witty (love the name of her cat). And great job Cassandra, Charlotte and Benjamin — your poems put a smile on my face. I am sending the the book to Weaam at Russley School in Christchurch as I loved the way the cats and mice swapped places! Brilliant!

Thanks to Scholastic I am sending Weaam a copy of Purrs, Paws and Claws.

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Here are the cat filled nursery rhymes:

 

Sleepy Leapy

 

Sleepy Leapy leapt over the wall,

Sleepy Leapy fell on his paws,

all the land’s cats

purred til the end,

but they couldn’t purr back

their sleepy friend.

Ewen aged 11, Year 7, Cobham Intermediate School, Christchurch

 

Amber is a Little Cat (to Mary Had a Little Lamb)

Amber is a little cat

Who really is quite clever

When it comes to homework time

We like to learn together

 

Amber likes to play board games

Especially with a spinner

Beetle, or the Game of Life

She always is the winner

 

She doesn’t like to hunt for food

Or prowl around at night

She would rather do some maths

Or read with you all night

 

So if you want a furry friend

That’s more than just a pet

Forget about a rat or dog

A Maine Coon cat is what to get!

Gemma Year 4, Age 8, Adventure School, Wellington

 

 

Three Blind Cats

 Three blind cats, three blind cats,

see how they bounce, see how they bounce

They pounced after the farmer’s mouse

and chased the mice right out of the house

Have you ever seen a mouse in the house

with three blind cats?

By Weaam, Year 6, Russley School

 

 

Cat care (to the tune of Row Row Row Your Boat)

Stroke, stroke, stroke your cat

Sixty times a day

Make sure that you feed it first

Before you go to play.

 

Stroke, stroke, stroke your cat

Tickle behind its ears

And it will be your bestest friend

For years and years and years.

 

 

Good Job! (To the tune of Hickory Dickory Dock)

Hickory dickory dock

Cat thinks its dinner o’clock

It brings a mouse

Into the house

And gives everybody a shock!

 

 

Flubber Flubber (To the tune of Mary Mary Quite Contrary)

Flubber, Flubber

I really do love her

But she is getting so fat!

She loves to eat

Spends all day asleep

What will we do with that cat?

All three by Daniel, Age 5, Year 1, Adventure School, Wellington

 

 

One, Two, Lick My Shoe

 One, two, lick my shoe;

Three, Four, meow at the door;

Five, Six, scratch the sticks;

Seven, eight, catch the bait;

Nine, ten, meow again;

Eleven, twelve, lick myself;

Thirteen, Fourteen, I am clean;

Fifteen, sixteen, I’ve been seen;

Seventeen, eighteen, I am waiting;

Nineteen, twenty, my bowl’s empty.

By Benjamin Home-schooled, Year 4, Age 8

 

 

Meow, Meow Ginger Cat

(Sung to Baa, Baa Black Sheep)

Written for my pussy cat Ginger who likes to catch birds.

 

Meow, meow Ginger cat

Have you caught a mouse?

No meow, No meow

I have caught a bird.

One by the garage,

One by the pool and

One by the back garden gate

I’ve eaten off the head and left it on the front step.

By Charlotte Home-schooled, Year 1, aged 5 1/2

 

Three Cat Poems
Walk, walk, walk your cat
Gently down the street
if you see a car
Don’t forget to wait!

Meow-meow black cat
have you any fur
yes yes yes
lots of piles full
Long for him
Short for her
Medium for my cat who I like

Meow-meow sat on a wall
Meow-meow had a great fall
Meow-meow landed on her feet
Because she’s a cat
What a great feat!

Cassandra, Home-schooled, aged 7

 

 

Jennifer Beck and Robyn Belton’s The Bantam and the Soldier is an exquisite picture book

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A few years ago I was delighted to have a conversation with the lovely Jennifer Beck at the Auckland Art Gallery about her books (so yes! there were other people listening).

One book that stood out for me amongst her treasures was The Bantam and the Soldier. I loved the story and I loved the illustrations by Robyn Belton.

It is the story of a young soldier who finds a bedraggled and very hungry hen. He scoops it up into his jacket, and in the awful destruction of war, looks after her. The hen is the bright spot in terrible times. It is like a symbol of hope and of caring. But the story also shows you how tough and terrible World War One was. It makes you think. It makes you feel something.

Here is a bit from the story. You can see it is beautifully written. Each sentence is lovingly crafted:

‘It was wartime. The old stone barn echoed to the sounds of heavy tanks rolling past, and to the beat of soldiers’ boots as regiment after regiment marched towards the battlefield just over the hill.’

At the back of the book is a useful list of books which Jennifer used to help her research her story.

This beloved story has just been redesigned and republished by Scholastic. It won the New Zealand Children’s Book of the year in 1997. I think it is terrific that Scholastic is re-issuing some of our beloved children’s books.

Beck Jennifer 2013 credit Lisa Harrington

Jennifer Beck has written more than forty-five books and has won all kinds of awards including some overseas. She lives in Auckland.

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Robyn Belton has illustrated many books and has won many important awards (including the Margaret Mahy Medal and the Russell Clarke Medal).

 

If you want to enter my ANZAC poem challenge:

DEADLINE for your ANZAC Poem Challenge: Wednesday April 16th

Send to paulajoygreen@gmail.com. Include your name, year, age and name of school. You can include your teacher’s name and email. PLEASE say it’s for the ANZAC Poem challenge.

I will post my favourites and have a copy of The Bantam and the Soldier for one poet thanks to Scholastic (I am going to buy myself a copy to replace it!).

 

John McIntyre reviews new childrens’ books about Anzac Day

 

John McIntyre reviews new childrens’ books about Anzac Day

Coincidentally (we are on the hunt to help write ANZAC poems) I heard this on the radio this morning. These books might help you research!

John made an important point about the grim and filthy conditions for the men in the trenches.

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Best Mates by Philippa Werry, illustrated by Bob Kerr, published by New Holland

Jim’s Letters by Glynn Harper, illustrated by Jenny Cooper, published by Puffin

The Anzac Puppy by Peter Millett, illustrated by Trish Bowles, published by Scholastic

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Link to the interview [I am having trouble embedding this link so you can always go to Radio NZ National and go to Kathryn Ryan and Nine to Noon (April 4th) and find it yourself.]

 

DEADLINE for your ANZAC Poem Challenge: Wednesday April 16th

Send to paulajoygreen@gmail.com. Include your name, year, age and name of school. You can include your teacher’s name and email. PLEASE say it’s for the ANZAC Poem challenge.

I will post my favourites and have a book prize (The Bantam and the Soldier) for one poet, thanks to Scholastic.

 

 

 

 

 

An ANZAC DAY challenge for you

April 25th (ANZAC Day) is a special day in New Zealand as it is the day we remember what happened in World War 1 and World War 2. It is day we get up very early to go to dawn services, we wear red poppies and we listen to the stories of those who were at war and from their families.

War is a terrible thing. Writers and poets who haven’t experienced war sometimes try and step into the shoes of those who have — to share what happened.

This is a very tricky and hard thing to do. You need to do do research. You need to talk to people who have stories to share. We can never know exactly what it is like but it is important to remember.

This year I want to post some poems to remember ANZAC Day. I invite you to go hunting for stories by talking to your grandparents or finding books.

Then have a go at using that story you find to write a poem.

For my favourite poem, and thanks to Scholastic I have a copy of The Bantam and the Soldier by Jennifer Beck and Robyn Belton.

I will do a post about the book next.

 

DEADLINE for your ANZAC poem Challenge: Wednesday April 16th

Send to paulajoygreen@gmail.com. Include your name, year, age and name of school. You can include your teacher’s name and email. PLEASE say it’s for the ANZAC Poem challenge.

I will post my favourites and have the book for one poet.

 

 

 

 

Try writing a poem about poetry * ! * ! * ! wooo hoooo * < <

Jack had a go at writing some poems about poetry when I asked him to send in something for my new book The Letter Box Cat. Sometimes I like to do this too!  Jack is in Year 6, aged 9 and goes to Fendalton Open Air School in Christchurch.

So …. why don’t you have a go at writing a poem that is about poems or poetry .. reading or writing them!

I might have another go too!  I wrote one to go in the front of A Treasury of New Zealand Poetry for Children so you can see that in October!

Here is one of  Jack‘s poems:

 

Poetry is…

Letters flowing

Words connecting

Ideas storming

Lines forming

 

Stanzas rhyming

Verses grouping

Unique thinking

Poem growing

 

Worldly being

Brain turning

Secret meaning

Fingers burning

The Finish Line.

 

DEADLINE for your What is a Poem Challenges: Wednesday April 16th

Send to paulajoygreen@gmail.com. Include your name, year, age and name of school. You can include your teacher’s name and email. Homeschoolers are welcome! PLEASE say it’s for the What is a Poem challenge.

I will post my favourites and have a book prize for one poet.

International Children’s Book Day is today- so I have a book for one young poet

Since 1967 people around the world have celebrated International Children’s Book Day on the birthday of Hans Christian Anderson.

Poetry Box is celebrating this day by offering a copy of a beautiful new book by Errol McLeary called Purrs, Paws and Claws.  Scholastic has just published it! It is fun!

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All the poems are about C A T S, and in some, Errol filled traditional nursery rhymes with unexpected cats. It made me want to go and write some poems myself!

Here is the start of one:

Two little pussy cats,

sitting on a wall,

one called Peter

and one  called Paul

 

Pick a nursery rhyme and fill it with cats.

 

DEADLINE for your Nursery Rhyme Cat poem: Friday April 4th

Send to paulajoygreen@gmail.com. Include your name, year, age and name of school. You can include your teacher’s name and email. PLEASE say it’s for the Nursery Rhyme Cat poem challenge.

I will post my favourites and have a book prize for one poet.

On poetry: Gemma says, for me poetry is something that frees your thoughts

Here are the pieces from the young poets I told you about yesterday. Read them and then see what you can come up with. You can write anything from ONE sentence to a paragraph.

 

On Poetry from NZ Poetry Box fans

 

Poetry is descriptive writing

that sometimes rhymes.

It’s very, very hard to write

but easy to read!

I like poems that are funny

and make me laugh out loud.

by Izak (9) Russley School Christchurch

 

For me poetry is something that frees your thoughts.  If you are down it always brings you up.  If you are already up, it lets you fly.  I especially like nonsense poems, and poems that play with words.  Because in poetry you are allowed to make up strange words and have rhymes that don’t quite rhyme, like ‘chicken flicking.’ It’s fun!

Gemma (8) Adventure School Wellington

 

I like poems that tell a story, have meaning and make me crack a code! I like to be drawn in by the words and think more deeply about the topic. I also like poems that make me laugh because they are silly or sound silly when you say them.

Writing poetry makes me happy because it inspires me to use expressiveness and to put my thoughts into words I wouldn’t normally use. The poems I have written that I really like are ones that have either rhyming lines or a rhythm, or where I have used words that challenge the reader to wonder what I mean, like a puzzle to be solved!

To me, poetry is a must to read and fun to write.

Jack (9) Fendalton Open Air School Christchurch

 

Sometimes I memorise poems I really enjoy, like the Highway Man. I like reading all kinds of poetry, short ones, long ones, rhyming ones, describing ones—they are all awesome!

Sylvia (13) now at Secondary School! Auckland

 

Reading poetry takes you over the rainbow into a magical world where anything can happen. It makes you feel happy, sad, confused, calm…like you can do anything.  But it seriously depends on the type of poetry you’re reading.

Vivian (9) St Kentigerns Girls’ School Auckland

 

 

DEADLINE for your What is a Poem Challenge: Wednesday April 16th

Send to paulajoygreen@gmail.com. Include your name, year, age and name of school. You can include your teacher’s name and email. PLEASE say it’s for the What is a Poem challenge.

I will post my favourites and have a book prize for one poet.