Sensing Memories with Twain 4th graders

For their second week of poetry Twain 4th graders went back in time. They explored some of their earliest memories. Students were asked, “What are memories? Which memories are special to you?” The majority of students described memories as events of the past that can make you feel happy, sad, or embarrassed just by remembering them. Different types of memories we came up with were about school, pets, vacations, sports, and new siblings being born.

Together we read Nikki Giovanni’s poem, “My First Memory of Librarians.” In her poem Giovanni uses her five senses (touch, taste, smell, sound, and sight) to describe her childhood memories of visiting a library. A big room with heavy wooden tables that sat on a creaky wood floor / On the right newspapers draped over what looked like a quilt rack/ The welcoming smile of my librarian/All those books—another world—just waiting/ At my fingertips. Although this was only a memory, through using the five senses students felt as if they too, were in the library with Giovanni.

Inspired by Nikki Giovanni, students wrote poems about their own memories using their five senses. Please enjoy these memorable poems and drawings below.



Ms. Williams 4th Grade
Group 1


My First Memory of My Puppy
by Maya J.

My first memory of my puppy was crazy, cute.
When my sister came home and bought the
puppy I touched her, she felt like a cloth
that was brand new.

She barked a little like a scared pony.
Her fur was like a vanilla frappe.
We gave her a treat but I thought
it was a cookie for me, so I ate it!
It was horrible.

Her first bath was a crazy adventure.
She jumped out and cleaned my mom’s
floor because she was so soapy and
getting my cat wet.

This was my fist memory of my puppy.


My First Memory Of My Shoes
By Emiliano O.

My shoes were clean, white as milk.
My mom was talking, I didn’t care.
I just wanted to share my shoes with
mom and go home.

But we went to more and more stores.

I touched my shoes, they felt like clothes.
Then we went home to sleep
and drink coffee.


First Memory
By Sofia R.

My first memory was when I held
my mom’s and dad’s hand.

The room smelled like perfume
and flowers.

They were telling me
I’m special.

I was happy seeing my
Mom and Dad’s faces.



Ms. Hayes 4th Grade
Group 2



My First Memory
By Janely G.

When I was five, I was on a swing.
My mom and dad were playing nearby
with my sister.

I called my dad, but he did not hear me.
So, I tried to get myself off, but I fell,
I started to cry.

My sister heard me crying.
She came and said,
Big sis what happened? are you ok?

When we were home, she gave me an
ice cream, and it helped me feel better.


My First Memory of the Mall
By Yuriana G.

My hands touching the smooth pens
that glittered in the light.

The taste of Mango Marshmallows
being swallowed by my boba that
I got at the food court.

The smell of all the food.
Hearing the conversations
of strangers going through
my head.

Seeing my stuff that I bought
on the way home.


My First Memory of a 2,000’s/Y2k Concert in 2023
By Sophia O. 

I went to a concert from the 2000’s in 2023.
I saw singers from the 2000’s.

Some were my favorite singers from back then
weren’t there, but that was okay,
because the songs the singers sung were good,
even if I didn’t see singers I know there.

I enjoyed it, there were lights and there were
people wearing makeup and clothes from back then.

I also heard great music.



Ms. Soldat 4th Grade
Group 3



My First Memory of Wisconsin Dells
By Diego L. 

I was diving in a pool, it was so fun.
I went to the darkest slide.
I was scared because when you go
it’s so steep, that my heart stopped
for one minute. But I was okay.

My family took me on a big slide, it was fun.
My big brother and I went on a red slide that
you have to get a tube when you go down.
It was steep and at the end there’s a circle
and you go around and there was a steep slide.

It was so funny because my dad was at
the end of the slide.
My dad flipped, he almost drowned,
but the water was not that deep,
but he was okay.

We went to Wisconsin downtown.
It was fun.



My First Memory of a Sad Birthday
By Sofia M.

My first memory…
The room full of joy.
It was my tenth birthday,

when my great grandmother
called on my father’s phone.

Smiles turned into frowns,
tears, sadness.

When I heard my great grandmother
had heart disease.

It was like a tear was the shore coming
in my head.

It was like rain hitting the ground.

It was like a leaf falling from a tree.

It was…a heartbreak.

But the heartwarming candles
and smell of pumpkin…

was like a nice fireplace.



My First Memory of Camping
by Jianny S. 

I could feel football in my hands,
when I threw it.

I remember eating pork with
my family in a tent.

I could smell the fresh air outside.
I could hear strong wind blowing
at my feet.

I can see myself playing catch with
my brothers, next to my big brother’s




Ms. Carther 4th Grade
Group 4



My Memory on a Big Ride
by Ivan G. 

When I first went on the raging bull
at Six Flags, I was with my cousin
and I was so scared.

I was touching everything,
I was tasting my saliva.

I was smelling all of the fresh air
in the sky.

The sound I heard was people screaming.
The sight I saw was how high I was in
in the sky,

then it went down.


My First Memory
By Abel L.

My first memory is when I was in Mexico.
My first time.
I went with my family.

Food to eat there are
tacos, soup, and more.

First thing I touched was a park.
I could smell healthy air
and heard loud music.

When I was driving there,
I saw mountains and they
almost touched the sky.



My Memory of Baseball
By Sebby

This is my memory of baseball.
This year my baseball team
won the championship.

When we won,
we ran the bases,
we slid to home plate.

The parents poured cold water
on us.

When we took pictures, they
sprayed silly string on us.

When we were done with all that,
we ate pizza and tacos.

Then we went and got a basketball.
It was all the coaches vs. players.
The coaches won.

Then we played in the park
and left at 10:50.





“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.