Monday, January 25, 2010

A Sock Is a Pocket for Your Toes {Poetry Friday}

I had never really thought about a sock as a pocket for your toes before and was very intrigued with this thinking. I participated in Poetry Friday last week hosted by Liz in Ink. As I was getting ready to post and connect with our host I discovered Liz in Ink is Liz Garton Scanlon, children's author. I explored her site further and found out her words were the foundation for a Caldecott Honor Medal just last week. Needless to say, I wanted to get her books and look at them further.

Who has something to share?, is a question we start our morning meetings with in my classroom. Last Friday before the children could start sharing their thoughts I said, "I do!" I then shared with the students about this blog and how the author of these two books (held in my hand) left me a comment about my thinking about The Swing poem.

For reading workshop that day I read A Sock Is a Pocket for Your Toes by Liz Garton Scanlon. This book is thoughtful and encourages the reader to look at normal every day things in a new way. Thinking outside of the box and I loved it but I wasn't sure how my kindergarten students would react to such thinking. Would they be able to generate some of their own pocket thinking? I knew third graders would be able to easily. As I read the story, they sat intently following along and listening but I couldn't read any facial expressions to know if they were thinking on their own. When I finished, I thought we read it for enjoyment and that's alright...until Z said, "the air is a pocket for birds." I could start to feel the bubbles of excitement in my body and then those bubbles burst right out when G said, "glasses are a pocket for your eyes." That's all it took and the ball was rolling. 20 out of 24 students generated their own ideas for pockets and 4 friends were willing to share their thinking with those 4 friends. We are now illustrating our pocket thinking and making a display for the hallway. Here are a few others I thought were just delightful from five and six year olds.

-a chair is a pocket for you

-your ponytail is a pocket for your hair

-a plate is a pocket for food

-your teeth are a pocket for cavities

-a swing is a pocket for your body

-a tv is a pocket for shows

-a zoo is a pocket for animals

-the Earth is a pocket for people


  1. This is SO lovely -- thank you!! Tell your students that my only regret since that book came out is that I didn't meet with kids BEFOREHAND -- because they always come up with such good ideas. Often, when I'm doing a school visit, we'll get rolling and I'll finally tell them they're going to have to save some of their ideas -- to write down or share with a friend -- because otherwise we're going to have to spend the night at school, eat cafeteria food for dinner and our parents are going to send out search parties! Really, the ideas are that endless...

    I'm so glad you've started another group of kids on these metaphors, and I'm also touched by your post.

    Thanks so much, good luck and stay in touch!

  2. I think A House Is a House for Me by Mary Ann Hoberman, illustrated by Betty Fraser would go perfectly with this (I've reviewed it here: )

    There are lines like
    "Barrels are houses for pickles
    And bottles are houses for jam.
    A pot is a spot for potatoes.
    A sandwich is home for some ham."

    And it's beautifully illustrated - all in all a gem of a book, that I'm sure your kids would enjoy.