• Walter Dean Myers Poems

    This year's fourth graders began composing poems inspired by Walter Dean Myers' poem entitled Summer.   They crafted these on October 10, 2006.  Myers' poem appears below:



    I like hot days, hot days

    Sweat is what you got days

    Bugs buzzin from cousin to cousin

    Juices dripping

    Running and ripping

    Catch the one you love days


    Birds peeping

    Old men sleeping

    Lazy days, daisies lay

    Beaming and dreaming

    Of hot days, hot days,

    Sweat is what you got days.

                                    - Walter Dean Myers

                                                                                             From Brown Angels: An Album of Pictures and Verse




    Here are some of our fourth graders pieces!



     Sabrina Yakubovich



     Going to class,

    Putting on the costume is what you got.

    Dancing days,

    Dancing from morning to night,

    Night to morning.

    Dancing on toes and feet,

    Feet and toes.

    Jumping, twirling, sitting, smiling,

    Having fun.



    Turning on music,

    Music turning on,

    Listing to the beat,

    Get ready for the show,

    Putting on make-up.

    My teacher makes up dances.

    From morning to night,

    Going to classes.

    A template that was used to help model how to construct the poem appears below:


    Pick a season, time of day, sport, activity, place, person (like mom!), vacation, time period and brainstorm first!



    Come up with adjectives (describing words like colors and senses) , nouns that go with it, verbs that go with it, onomatopoeia, feelings, and more. 


    Morning – sunrise, snoring, alarm clocks whining, breakfast (at Nifty Fiftys), birds, soozing, groggy, excited, eager, dreams, waking, pillow, tired


    For example:

    Winter:  cold, snowy, holidays, lonely, warmth inside, expectation, white, cloudy, whoosh, happy, football, Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas, sledding, building snow forts.

    Then build a poem like Walter Dean Myers’ poem called Summer.


    I ___________  ____________________, _________________


    ___________________ is what you got ___________________.




    __________________  _____________________


    __________________ and _______________________.


    _______________________________ days.



    ________________________  _______________________


    ________________________ __________________________


    __________________________, ________________________


    ____________________ and _________________________.


    Of, or to, with _________________, ______________________




    Let your students know that certain lines should have adjectives or present tense verbs.  Have them use the poem Summer to help guide them through composing their own.  But give them lots of latitude to experiment and choose the way they want to compose and craft.  Look at our fourth graders' different slants on how to craft.  Pretty cool stuff!



    By Eric Cruz


    I love soccer, love soccer

    Soccer is what you do all day.

    Shots from goal to goal

    Sweat dripping

    Running and slide tackling

    Score at the end of the match


    People screaming

    Goalies saving shots

     Passing shooting, shooting passing

    Losing and winning

    I love soccer, love soccer

    Soccer is what I do all day     



    by Alex Stolz


     I like the sun, the shiny bright thing in the sky

    The sunshine is what you got each and everyday

    Shining from the dark alleys to where you stand on that very spot

    Keeping hydrated from the sun’s rays even when it’s hiding through the wet puffy clouds

    Tanning in the summer and tiring to find it in the winter

    The sun - a wonderful thing


    Running and jumping outside, it’s a drag to be held to be inside

    So far away it looks like a little multi-colored ball

    So bright, too bright

    Shining and glaring

    At the big beautiful sun

    Sunshine each and every day