Poetry as Play!

In Ms Carteno’s 6th grade classes, we read a short poem by Valerie Worth called “Safety Pin” that imagined a safety pin as some very different things (a shrimp! a fish!). We talked about how poetry let’s us play with language and make even the most boring objects strange and unfamiliar. We wrote short poems imagining regular, everyday classroom items as new and surprising things.



-Genesis R

The ruler looks like a long finger pointing at a window

and like a sword swinging in a war and like a wand playing

a trick on a kid.




The pencil

it is a lot of things.

It goes

to war

with paper

and the

grey graphite

is the remains of

their enemies,

it is like

a baton

the fingers

done with

the pencil

or it can

be a


wand casting

a spell on

evil monsters,

filling the

paper wirth

grey nothingness.




The bird is going to fly

through a galling building and

is injured.




Salt Grain

-Omari L

Salt grain, salt grain, salt grain is like the middle child

of the family, the sugar is like the smallness I felt

because I’m short. A really small rock is like the big brother

of the family. The kool-aid is like the little brother and the sand

is like the evil twin in the family.

And the broken crumbs around like the favorite cousin.






A pencil is like a ton of people crossing a bridge.

A pencil is like a stick that

people write with.

A pencil is like a rocketship and

the eraser is the engine.


Pencil Case

-Aden K

A metro going 100 miles an hour

breaks gone.

People panicking and the train

stops because the breaks are back.


Sticky Note

-Genna V

Sticky notes

as boring as possible

until you imagine it as a house with no roof

wind breezing through.



“Writing poetry makes me feel like I can see myself, like I can see my reflection, but not in a mirror, in the world. I write and I know I can be reflected.”
-Oscar S.

“Writing poetry makes me feel free.”
-Buenda D.

“Writing poetry is like your best friend.”
-Jessica M.