Friday, November 4, 2016

Rereading for Meaning {Poetry Friday}


I threw 
a small water balloon.
That's all.

I hid.
I tossed.
I ran.

My victim knows, 
and lies in wait
with the garden hose.

by  Kristine O'Connell George

I shared this poem a few weeks ago with my second graders and I thought they would have a reaction to the ending of, "Oh, no!" but they didn't.  The room was silent.  I thought it was a great topic for young students.  There's a great illustration with it in the book - The Great Frog Race and Other Poems by Kristine O'Connell George.  I didn't want to tell them my reaction so I decided to reread the poem.  I started to see some eyes and eyebrows twitching a bit, a tall tell sign some thinking was flickering.  I reread it a third time and the reaction I was hoping for came and I was reminded that rereading for meaning might be easier with short poetry pieces.

Thank you Laura at Writing the World for Kids for hosting Poetry Friday this week.


  1. What a fun poem. And pertinent lesson. My teaching mantra has become 'Do less best.' - and you've just illustrated it.

  2. What a good lesson learned, and also I wonder if some may have never done a water balloon fight. Fun poem, Mandy.

  3. Perfect for inferring and a great poem for visualizing! I will be saving it to use one day. Do you know this poem?
    Oh, No! by Katie McAllaster Weaver in the book Oh, No! Where Are My Pants? and Other Disasters: Poems edited by Lee Bennett Hopkins

    Hello apple!
    Shiny red.


    Hello worm.
    Where's your head?

    1. I don't know the book but now I need to get it and that poem gave me a bit Oh, No! Thanks for sharing, I'm going to use it with the kids.

  4. That is a great poem. So few words, so much tension and expectation. Leaves a lot to the reader. I like that you had to read it three times for the kids to feel safe enough to laugh. :-)

  5. Love this poem. And, yes, rereading poems is magic. Poems pack so much into so few words, that I think it's crucial we give kids several opportunities to absorb them:>)

  6. Fabulous lesson on inferring. And the lesson in your reaction is one of patience -- don't rush in to explain; let the words do the work.

    1. There is a lesson in my reaction - thanks for pointing that out.