Wednesday, May 15, 2019

DMC: Instructions for a Merry-Go-Round and a Notebook, by Chloe and Madison

Margaret Simon introduced her gifted students to this month's challenge to show them "how we can write about the most ordinary of things in a very extraordinary way." Not surprisingly, she got some extraordinary results! Read more of her students' poems on the May 2019 padlet.


Make me dizzy
Go round and round
Blow a soft breeze
Shhhhhhh Shhhhhhh
Create a tornado of sand
Spinnnnn Spinnnnn
Don't let me fly off

I hit a bushhhhhhhh!!!!!!!!!

          © 2019 Chloe 3rd grader GT. All rights reserved.


Your vertebra must stay strong,
Your spindly blue ribcage holds beating words and breathing doodles.
You must stay a well-functioning organism, doing your job efficiently.
Hold together until you grow weary and old and begin to weather.
When you fall apart, let your destruction become recycled into the next generation.

          © 2019 Madison, 5th Grade G.T. student. All rights reserved.

Elizabeth Steinglass has challenged us to write a poem giving instructions to an inanimate object about how to do its job. Click HERE for more details and to read this month's Spotlight ON interview.

Post your poem on our May 2019 padlet. All contributions will be included in a wrap-up celebration on Friday, May 31st, and one lucky participant will win a personalized copy of her fantastic debut poetry collection from WordSong:


  1. These are wonderful! Chloe, your repetition of words and sounds really gives me a sense of spinning, as does the tornado of sand. I love your funny ending. Madison, I love your organism metaphor. Every time I look at the spiral notebook I'll think about your use of spine and ribs. How lovely to hope that the notebook will be recycled and renewed. Thank you for sharing your poems!

  2. Beautiful imagination in both poems, Chloe and Madison! I love that 'tornado of sand', too & the wonder of things inside the notebook: "spindly blue ribcage holds beating words and breathing doodles." Thank you!

  3. There's so much to love about these poems!

    Chloe, I love the sound effects and the build from a soft breeze to a tornado of sand. What a great set-up for your funny ending! Hope the bush didn't have any prickers! ;)

    And Madison, what a fantastic, creative rendering of a notebook! Those beating words and breathing doodles of yours must hold a whole lot of life to come up with a poem like this one. Wow!

  4. So fantastic! Chloe, the ending of your poem made me smile (even though falling into a bush would probably hurt!). I love how you mirrored the sound of the soft breeze in your very last line! Madison, what a beautiful, exciting metaphor! The "spindly blue ribcage" is such an excellent description. Well done, poets!

  5. Well done, Chloe and Madison! I love the repetition of sound and sight (Shhhhh, Spinnnn) that build to the flying ending of the Merry-Go-Round, and the personification (vertebra, rib-cage) that bring the notebook to life.

  6. these are fabulous. Well done, Chloe and Madison!

  7. Nice job on these. It's great what kids can come up with if just given a chance. Thanks for the post.

  8. I'm so proud of these two. Two amazing students.

  9. These are wonderful! Chloe, you have so much movement and energy in your poem and Madison, I love your personification of your notebook. Isn't this a fun challenge!? Well done!