I visited some poets in 2nd grade (my son and his classmates) for a parent visiting day and thought they’d be perfect to celebrate National Poetry Month in April.
2nd Grade Poetry
The 2nd grade poems composed color poems using What is Black? by Mary O’Neill as their model. The poem was in my son’s notebook and all marked up. I guess he studied it carefully.
I wasn’t able to find What is Black? online but I did find Mary O’Neill’s What is Red?
What is Red? by Mary O’Neill
Red is sunset
Blazing and bright.
Red is feeling brave
With all your might.
Red is a sunburn
Spot on your nose.
Is a red, red, rose.
Red squiggles out
When you cut your hand.
Red is a brick
And the sound of a band.
Red is hotness
You get inside
When you’re embarassed
And want to hide.
Fire- flicker red–
And you’re angry
Red runs through your head.
Red is an Indian,
A Valentine heart.
The trimmings on
A circus cart.
Red is a lipstick
Red is a shout
Red is a signal
That says “WATCH OUT!”
Red is great big
Red is the giantest
Color of all.
Red is a show-off.
No doubt about it.
But can you imagine
Living without it?
I found her color poems in this book, Hailstones and Halibut Bones: Adventures in Poetry and Color by Mary Le Duc O’Neill
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April is National Poetry Month
To celebrate this first day of April, I sharing not pranks but poems. By 2nd grade boys, all buddies of my son. All the parents were invited to class to meet real, live poets and we were thrilled to read their poetry and the poets were also happy to read them to us.
My son’s favorite color is blue. I did not know that. It used to be green!
2nd Grade Poetry
My son’s friend Sam J. was the only person I noticed who spaced out his lines of poetry in his composition, What is White?
What is Red? Poem by 2nd Grade
My son’s friend Akeale wrote about his favorite color red. How do you think it compares to Mary O’Neill’s red poem? Color can be so personal. Everyone has different images … that’s what makes these color poems so special!
What is Silver? Poem
I think this silver poem is from our neighbor Mark but I’m not sure. It was a little chaotic in that classroom! 🙂
Now that I know that all 2nd grade boys are gifted poets, I’m going to expect a poem for mother’s day!
p.s. Thank you to reader Ali who’s 3rd grade son composed this lovely color poem:
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26 thoughts on “Poetry by 2nd Grade Boys”
I love this poem! And I love red, too – perfect combinatiion :)))
I was impressed with the color poems too! All them are so great!
It was difficult to hear, but I was very surprised by the level of complexity of the poems and the way the boys read them. Poetry is often a difficult topic for young children, This teacher is doing a terrific job of inspiring them to write.
Sorry for the noisy background. There were a lot of us crammed into that classroom. Their teacher is awesome! I was impressed too by their poems and by their willingness to share them! They are all poets!
Loved the White Poem! mmm Vanilla ice cream and love polar bears too! the poem really conjured about some delightful visuals. very well done.
I’ll be sure to let the White Poem poet know! He will be so happy!
I really like “what is red” so cleaver. These kids did a great job on these peoms.
Thanks so much! They will be so pleased to hear that from someone who isn’t their teacher or parent! Thank you for taking time to leave a comment!
What a great way to celebrate April 1st!
My son’s favorite color used to be green but is now blue, as well.
I missed April Fool’s pranks but I am celebrating National Poetry Month big time!
Love this! It’s such a great blend of creativity and working from a set idea. Just the right amount of “freedom” and “rules” to make a great project!
I think the minimal rules as guidance helped those boys create such wonderful poems. Who knew that kids are all naturally gifted poets?!
What a lovely post. Mind you I frequently find myself saying this as I read your posts/thoughts! I’m a bit nervous around poetry but this looks marvellous and obviously inspirational for the children too. Your son looks like he enjoyed having his mum there to share it with too.
I might be inspired to try now. Thanks
Same! I am nervous around poetry as well. I’ll be posting all month for National Poetry Month though to face my fear. I even composed a (potty humor) based Spine Poem. It’s not great poetry but it was fun and I suppose that is the first step in recovery from Fear of Poetry!
Thanks so much! Your kind words really made my day, especially as Google has been particularly harsh these last few weeks.
The poetry day where parents were invited to meet a lot of poets was great fun (though loud and chaotic as you might have noticed from the videos). My son happily read his poem several times.
Please join me in doing a Spine Poem. I think it’s a good first baby step! I’ll be posting mine and how to submit to 100 Scope Notes soon.
I love Hailstones and Halibut Bones, it’s one of my favorites. What a fantastic way to celebrate color. Red and Yellow are my favorite colors. Hearing them read their poetry is so precious. Thanks so much for sharing this Mia. I’m so happy you captured this treasured moment.
Me too! My blog is becoming a virtual scrapbook of obliquely capturing my kids without them protesting. It was fun to see my son and his friends become such talented poets, so proud of their work! We parents were so impressed!
Some talented poets here! I love how poetry comes so naturally for kids! What a great series to use as inspiration. I want to read these to my kids!
Please let me know if you do get a chance to read her book of poems to your kids. I wonder if kids would be inspired on their own after reading her poems to write their own or if they have to be forced to? I think my kids would have to be forced to.
2nd grade boys writing poetry is enough to make your heart melt. White smells like white paint from a can, indeed.
I know, right?!!! White smells like white paint from a can. Truth! White is a chalky smell!!!
Bravo to all the wonderful poets!
Thanks Twisterfish! They were so proud of their poems. It was adorable to watch!
So adorable! I love the videos! Thanks for sharing at The Children’s Bookshelf.
Thanks Mom and Kiddo! Now I am noticing that I never read a single poem by a 2nd grade girl that day!
The poems are gorgeous Mia 🙂 Love this post. I’ll be featuring your post as part of my Kids Books: Stories, Poems & Activities roundup from the Weekly Kids’ Co-op. Thanks for sharing. xoxo P
Thank you so much Pauline! I was surprised too that all the boys wrote such wonderful poems and also really seemed to enjoy it. They were really proud of their work. We are lucky to have such a great teacher!!!