This year, we are posting 8 new, exciting pieces of student writing on the 26th of the month (Get it?). Each month will be curated by our staff. Our aim is to give you an entertaining and fair sampling from our many programs. To celebrate National Reading Month, we’re going to start with one of our favorite poems from the year, which just HAPPENS to be about reading!
* Drop-in Writing *
Age 8, Emerson School, Ann Arbor
“How To Be A Good Reader”
To be a reader you have to read. You can
read long things, short things, scary things,
mushy love things, but you have to read.
Glue your eyes (not literally) to the paper
and read. Read different things so you
know what you like.
Don’t read exciting things at bedtime. You
won’t get sleep, so you can’t read.
Because when you read, your
imagination is awesome.
Age 9, Northside Elementary, Ann Arbor
Once there was a wolf and he was great at tricking people for his fellows in the woods and on the farm. One day the farmer cut down all the corn and brought in the ducks. He had no food to eat! He needed revenge on the farmer.
What he needed was a disguise to make the farmer feed the wolf and not chase him away. He studied the animals to see the best one that got fed the most. It was the sheep. The women sheep were wearing dresses. (He did not want to wear a dress.) The men sheep wore T-shirts and jeans. (That’s more like it.)
Sadly, at the forest store there were only dresses left in stock. “This will have to do!” he said. He put it on and bought some wool. He was ready to go.
Slowly he marched into the field. The farmer did not notice at all! He was fed grass and lettuce. “This will have to do,” the wolf though to himself.
He got fed and turned right into a sheep. (He changed gender though.) He was a wolf, in sheep’s clothing.
* In-school Residencies *
Ms. Desphande’s second-grade class at Mitchell Elementary, Ann Arbor
When I am at the library in Mitchell School, we can check out books. The library teacher’s name is Ms. Reader! Second grade goes to library on Mondays for one hour. The library is between the lunchroom and gym. Sometimes we do different kind of centers. Sometimes she reads us a book. We go to the library because she teaches us about reading. I feel happy when I am at the library. We like the library because we like reading. We sit on the story steps when she reads us a story. When I am at the library sometimes it is cold and sometimes it is warm. There are books in Spanish and English. When we are happy, we laugh and we smile. When I smile I talk about the book. When we go to the library we are excited because we think that it is fun. When she helps us choose a book we like the books she chooses for us. When we get a baby animal book I am happy. When I am in the library in Mitchell School, I never want to be anywhere else. I never want to leave the library with books. I love the library with a lot of books.
* Drop-in Writing for Wee Bots *
Age 7, Angell Elementary, Ann Arbor
Once upon a time there was a giraffe using a hot tub as a toilet. After he got out, more people got in. Then they realized it smelled like rotten eggs. They went to tell the director of the hot tub that someone might have peed in the tub. The director called the city’s best carpenters to build security cameras to watch whomever was doing something bad. The same giraffe came next week, and he didn’t know there were security cameras because they were nailed into the walls. Then he peed AGAIN in the tub. Then the alarm was set off. And then the director of the hot tub came running over to see who it was. He realized it was just a giraffe. But he gave him a time-out anyway. The giraffe learned a lesson: never pee in a tub.
Age 7, Thurston Elementary, Ann Arbor
The sun is hot. The sun is so, so hot. I wish I could throw an ice cube to the sun but it’s going to melt right away and nothing is going to come back to me. I will be really sad. In summer it’s burning me and I’m sweating. It makes me so boiling I can’t even go to the beach and I can’t even put one tiny, tiny part of my skin on my foot can’t even put a tiny, tiny part in the sand. So it’s so hot I don’t even know how to explain it to you. I’ll try to explain it to you when I think of the word. But right now I think I need some time to think. Bye-bye.
* Field Trips *
Ms. Newton’s third-grade class, Estabrook Elementary, Ypsilanti
“Digital Jackrabbit (Model DJ0049X)”
In the future of Briarwatts City, there is a robot named Digital Jackrabbit (Model DJ0049X), but he pretends to be a human named Rex. Rex is a nice, fancy human (robot) in a top hat and tuxedo. No one can tell he is a robot because he has a human mask. He is a fancy business robot, so he is having a business meeting with a real fancy business man.
Suddenly, Evil Jane, another robot (Model EBO-626) disguised as a human, crashes her time-traveling robot car into Rex’s fancy business office, destroying Rex’s time-travel car.
“Now you can’t use your car!” Evil Jane cackles.
She kidnaps Dr. Prof. Pizza Steve and Rex’s business partner as she drives off into another time! Dr. Prof. Pizza Steve is a scientist (and a pizza) who creates robots that can make pizza in their bellies. Evil Jane wants Dr. Prof. Pizza Steve to make an army of Pizza-Making Robots so she can rule Briarwatts City.
Rex will not stand for an interruption to his business! He returns to the lab to retrieve Dr. Prof. Pizza Steve’s other robots to rescue Dr. Prof. Pizza Steve and his business partner. The other robots build Rex another time-traveling car. He time-travels in his new car and tracks down Evil Jane.
Evil Jane was hiding out in 1995! The mid-nineties were the best time for pizza! Everyone knows that.
“This is a very weird time! There are no robots and the pizza is so good!” exclaimed Rex.
“Stop fighting and listen!” says Dr. Prof. Pizza Steve. “You, DJ0049X (aka Rex), and you, EBO-626 (aka Evil Jane), are secretly siblings!”
Ms. Martin’s second-grade class, Bryant Elementary, Ann Arbor
Once upon a time, in the winter many years in the future, there is a super-genius baby named Krystamo the Tiny Wonder Transformer Baby. Krystamo lives in Gold Glacier Island in an ice castle with a golden door, and has a mustache and three tiny blue hairs on his head with a mohawk. He has chubby cheeks and very big and strong legs and can transform into ice or gold to save the day. Krystamo’s best friend, Snow Dude, is a snowman with an icicle mustache who shoots snowballs and ice from his belly button.
One day, Snow Dude is visiting from Russia and is chatting with Krystamo about their mustaches. All of a sudden, Doctor Soup, the Soup Man, crash lands his plane into Krystamo’s castle. For a very, very long time, Doctor Soup had been trying to conquer Glacier Island so he could rule the world and become rich by turning everything into soup. “Hey little Krystamo!” Doctor Soup yells. “I’m here to defeat you once and for all!” Doctor Soup jumps out of his plane, waving his soup spoons in the air.
“No you won’t!” Krystamo shouts bravely, as Snow Dude laughs with courage.
“I’ve got a new invention for you!” Doctor Soup tells them, as he runs around the plane.
“You’ve never defeated us yet!” Snow Dude and Krystamo yell together.
Doctor Soup looks them in the eye. “I have a new onion and garlic soup cannon that will melt all your ice. It has a vacuum to turn the melted ice into more soup!” He presses the green button on his invention, and soup begins shooting out.
Krystamo Baby is not afraid. “I don’t have to worry about that!” he tells Doctor Soup, transforming into a golden force field that will protect Snow Dude and everyone else.
Doctor Soup floats away angrily in his hovercraft. Snow Dude quickly fixes the plane so that he and Krystamo can chase Doctor Soup. They catch up to him over Piranha Lake, where they can see piranhas, orcas, bad dolphins, sharks, and stingrays. “We’ve got you now!” they announce to Doctor Soup.
* Tutoring on Washington Street in Ypsilanti *
Age 12, South Arbor Academy, Ypsilanti
There once was a man named Billy Bob Joe. He lived in the down under. Billy enjoyed watching television in the dark and eating chips. One day there was a storm that hit his house, and he got all wet. Suddenly, he was heard screaming. He had electrocuted himself! After he woke up in the hospital, he was notified that he had to stay in the hospital for thirty days. Billy Bob Joe was furious, so he broke some hospital equipment. Thirty days later, he returned to his home, but it wasn’t there. While Billy was in the hospital, he had lost all his money. He slept on the streets. And begged people, “Please give me some money, please,” Billy said. He saved all the money and spent it on a mansion. He got a girlfriend and became famous for his talents. Billy Bob Joe had a good life and a wonderful family. He lived happily with his family. (The end!)