This is my playground for poetry written for children with ideas and inspiration for writing your own poems. Come on in. Sit for a spell, have a cup of words to swirl around and make your own cup of poetry. I'm so glad you are here. I hope you'll find the Kingdom of Poetry a fun place to be.

Friday, March 14, 2014


The Poetry Friday Anthology for Science (Teacher's Edition)

       It is Friday, time for a poetry party and time to celebrate the new Poetry Friday Anthology for Science, compiled by Sylvia Vardell and Janet Wong, published by Pomelo Books. . 

      The Poetry Friday Anthology for Science is a fun way to discover science and poetry together.  The Anthology has 218 poems written by 78 children's poets. 
Each poem is a magic creation to develop a child's interest in science and poetry.

Three great children's poets have kindly agreed to help with the celebration--Laura Purdie Salas, Janet Wong, and Eileen Spinelli.

       Laura Purdie Salas, children's author and poet has allowed me to share her acrostic poem from the anthology. Thank you, Laura.

by Laura Purdie Salas

Look at labels.
Ask advice.
Be sure to check directions twice!  Wear

Solid shoes to shield your feet,
And keep your table clean and neat.
Follow Rules that you are given.
The startling world
You live in.

©2014 Laura Purdie Salas.  Used with permission of the author, all rights reserved. (Third Grade, Week 2, Lab Safety, from The Poetry Friday Anthology for Science compiled by Sylvia Vardell and Janet Wong, Pomelo Books.) 

    I love acrostic poems and this one I thought was a dandy.  Do you see how it fits to spell a word in the left margin?  But this poem also rhymes, which makes it a special poem to me.  Well done, Laura.  Can you take your own science word and write an acrostic?  I used the word LAB to write mine:


All about

   Now it's your turn.

   And while you are thinking about writing your own science poem, I want to share another fun science poem.  This one is from Janet Wong, extraordinary children's poet. Thanks, Janet.

by Janet Wong

Last week
I couldn't
see the board
in any
of my classes.

Dr. Lee
right away
that I needed
some glasses!

When I grow up
I want to be
a doctor
just like
Dr. Lee!

©2014 Janet Wong.  Used with permission of the author, all rights reserved. (Kindergarten, Week 34, Science Careers, from The Poetry Friday Anthology for Science compiled by Sylvia Vardell and Janet Wong, Pomelo Books.) 

Janet told me she envisions Dr. Lee as a woman. I think it is a delightful poem to think about all the medical, biological, scientific professions one can go into if you like science.  Young people hold the future of the world and science can help to make our lives better.

Eileen Spinelli has also given me permission to share her poem.  This poem has a special effect on me.  Every time I read it, I get a tiny little flutter in my heart as I consider all the possibilities in the world that can happen between those spaces inside the atoms. (If you click on her name above you can see another science poem of hers and all the covers of her wonderful books.)

by Eileen Spinelli

Imagine something very small:
a rubber duck, a ping-pong ball.

Imagine something smaller yet:
a pebble or a violet.

Go smaller now: a silver bead
a baby's tooth, a pumpkin seed.

Keep going--
freckle, flea or gnat,
a speck of dander from the cat.
Imagine that.

And then imagine this--so cool--
a teeny-tiny molecule.
So teeny-tiny you and I 
can't see it with the naked eye.

To think of it gives me a chill.
But there is something smaller still:
the atom!

Billions fit in a fleck of foam
or on the dot at the end of this poem.


©2014 Eileen Spinelli.  Used with permission of the author, all rights reserved. (Second Grade, Week 9, Matter, from The Poetry Friday Anthology for Science compiled by Sylvia Vardell and Janet Wong, Pomelo Books.)   
Gosh, I don't know why, but I really feel up-lifted when I read this poem.

Here is my poem from the anthology:

Capillary Action
by Joy Acey

 I put my stick of celery
in my cherry drink.
Three days later
the leaves turned pink!

Tell me your reaction.
Tell me what you think?
Could capillary action
happen when I drink?

If you'd like to know more about THE POETRY FRIDAY ANTHOLOGY FOR SCIENCE you can see more sample poems at the Pomelo Books web site here.

Sylvia Vardell had a terrific post about the books on her blog Poetry for Children last week, here.

   These science poems are special to me because science plays a big part in my life.  My husband is a scientist, an immunologist to be specific.  He loves to do science experiments and find out new things.  It is exciting to find out something new no one else has ever known before and then to be able to share that information with others.  But, due to cuts of almost 25% to federal research budgets, less than one in six new grants is being funded.  Research programs across the United States are being eliminated and scientific labs are shutting down.  There are some fun student made videos titled STAND UP FOR SCIENCE, that discuss this problem on the  Federation of Societies for Experimental Biology web site.

Perhaps by reading THE POETRY FRIDAY ANTHOLOGY FOR SCIENCE you'll discover something you never knew before, or find something about yourself  you didn't know.  I hope you do and I hope you'll be able to share your new knowledge.  Have fun with science and poetry.  Happy Friday.

    For more poetry on our Poetry Friday Roundup, hop over to Rogue Anthropologist and catch lots of other great poetry sites. 

    On Saturday at 1, Juantia Havill, Ken Slesarik and I will be reading science poems from the Poetry Friday Anthology for Science at the Science tent at the Book Festival in Tucson, on the mall at the University of Arizona.  It is all FREE and we'd love to see you.  Drop by and say HELLO.


  1. Love all these poems, Joy--capillary action--wonderful! I have only read a few poems in the collection and plan to read the entire thing this w/e for a science bonanza. Your nice sampling here has truly whet my appetite! Thanks for including me:>)

    1. Laura,
      Thank you for letting me use your poem on my blog. It is a fantastic poem. Well written and is a great one for kicking off discussions with kids about lab safety. Thank you for writing it. You are one of my heroes.

  2. I like the movement in Eileen Spinelli's poem. Very nice. I hadn't heard of "Stand Up For Science," but I will check it out. I was surprised when my kids were in elementary school that they only had science every other week on Fridays! (They have it every day in middle school and high school.)

    1. Oh Tabatha, I'm so glad you like Eileen's poem too. The poem is one of those I love the feel of in my mouth. Some days you just feel like eating poetry.
      Thank you too, for all you do for children's poetry and children's poets.

  3. I ordered the other P.F. anthologies for the library; this one goes out in the next order. Eileen's poem was my favorite of the ones you shared.

    1. Diane,
      I'm glad you like Eileen's poem. There are so many great poems in the anthology it would be hard for me to pick my favorite. I hope the books arrive when you have a long weekend when you have lots of time to read because there are so many good poems and ideas for teaching in the POETRY FRIDAY ANTHOLOGY FOR SCIENCE that you're going to have a great time..

  4. Some very cool poems! Thanks for sharing Joy...the books look incredible.

    1. Thanks Matt.
      I agree. I think the books are incredible, too. Sylvia Vardell and Janet Wong have done a fantastic job compiling the books and I feel so humble to be in the company of so many great children's poets. Each page is a delightful treat.

  5. These poems are all terrific. Thanks for sharing them here. I really can't wait to see this book.

    1. Thanks, Rosi.
      I'm just bowled over to think of all the work that went into making these wonderful books. Sylvia Vardell and Janet Wong have achieved greatness by publishing 7 poetry books for children at one time. Amazing feat! Kids are going to love the poems and activities.

    2. Thank you, Joy, for your terrific poems and also for spreading the word about all 7 books--the Teacher's Edition and also the six Student Editions. We hope that teachers can get PTO or district support to buy class sets of the Student Editions!

  6. It's a wonderful shout-out for the book, Joy. I liked the pic of you in the t-shirt too, & your poem-you end with good lines of surprise. I received my book today! All through the years, students loved learning about science things a lot-I wish the cuts weren't so bad. Best to your husband in that if it touches him.

    1. Thanks Linda. Of course I'm partial, but I think it is a great book. I just feel grateful to be included with all the other fantastic poets. I hope kids enjoy the books.

  7. Thanks for sharing these, Joy. I'm slowly making my way through the anthology, savoring each and every poem. "Capillary Action" made me smile -- could it be the food? :)

    1. Perhaps, you've inspired me to try and make a variety of pastel celery sticks for Easter. Do you think Cornelius would like some?
      Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment.

  8. What a wonderful new resource and a fun celebratory post! Thanks for teaching me about capillary action too. :)

    1. Yes, there is a lot of vocabulary building and fun in the books.
      Thanks, Michelle. I wish there had been a book like this when I was a kid.

    2. Building science vocabulary is one thing that these books do really well, I feel. Goodness knows: kids will not be able to forget what "capillary action" means after they read your poem, Joy!

  9. Thanks for sharing all these great science poems, Joy. Eileen's poem is especially profound - billions of atoms on a period at the end of a poem. Puts it all in perspective, doesn't it? = )

    1. There is a music quote attributed to several musicians that states, It isn't the notes, but the spaces between the notes that make music. I feel this way about poetry. It isn't the words, it is the spaces between the words that makes the poetry. This is why Eileen Spinelli's poem THINK SMALL means so much to me. It isn't the atoms, it is the spaces between the atoms that hold all those possibilities. I'm glad you like it too.