KidPoWriMo Day 11 ~ Mixing it up

Congratulations! The month is one third of the way finished!

With apologies for the delay in posting the 11th prompt, I am working to catch up.

Today is when we pause for a moment and remember what we have covered so far this month. If you like one of the lessons more than another, that is OK. You may like working with iambs more than writing haiku. If so, then write using iambs in most of your poems. If simile’ makes you smile but you don’t have time for rhyme, use more simile’ and don’t let anyone stop you.

You may have noticed that the prompts I have posted have not been very specific. I have not asked you to write about a particular thing that I choose, like “apple pie” or a “purple pillow”. Although everyone reading this may have seen these things and knows what they are, some of you might not be as inspired as I think you’d be if I gave you a specific prompt. What I have tried to do is to get you to think of things that inspire you and let you write about them.

[Think about this: if I did give a prompt to write about a purple pillow, and your teachers and parents and other poets were reading the posted poems, we would have so many poems about purple pillows, the internet would be overdecorated!]

Whether you are using the prompts found here or writing your own poem each day, you have freedom of choice. This is true even when there is no #KidPoWriMo.

Poetic word of the day: art (click here to read the definition on the Bing Dictionary)

Poetry is art created with words. But, the things poets write about are not always beautiful. Still with our words, we draw attention to the things we choose as topics for our poetry, and we do so in an artistic way.

Have you ever just talked to someone about something that is important to you? When someone writes a poem about an important topic and shares it, people are more likely to pay close attention to what they say, especially because they took time and effort to write the poem in the first place.

You can mix two, three or four (or more) of the prompts so far. But, if another poet chose the same prompts, the poems you write would still be very different. The prompts I am offering here leave lots of room for you to use your own creativity and express your individuality.

PROMPT: Below is a list of possible mix-ups (or mash-ups). Pick one of them and use it to write your poem.

– rhyming, ode containing simile’ ~ the ode can be to something you found or got while on summer vacation

– 5-7-5 haiku, written backwards that includes personification ~ write the whole haiku backwards starting with the last word of the last line

– 6-word haiku that uses iambs that includes alliteration ~ it is OK if all six words do not begin with the same letter – see how many you can make fit into your haiku

FOR PARENTS OF YOUNGER CHILDREN: Combining alliteration,  iambs and word cards, have your child(ren) pick a letter and write down some left-foot iambs that are nouns and that begin with that letter. Pick another letter and do the same thing, but with adjectives. Each card should have two syllables (either one two-syllable word or two one-syllable words).

Use the whisper-shout technique to make sure they are left foot iambs. Build a stack of 20 words (10 nouns and 10 adjectives in separate piles). Pick one card from the middle of each stack. Read the adjective card and then the noun card. Write more iamb cards as you think of more words.

Once you have four combinations you like, copy them onto paper and think of verbs and adverbs (and other parts of speech) you can add. If your younger child(ren) do not know about the parts of speech yet, help them think of words that make their cards into a sentence, even if the words are not iambs.

The randomness of combining iambs written on cards and the fact that you and your child(ren) can pick pairs you like, will help you begin a poem that you will feel proud to have written with your kids.

NOTE: Rhyme, Iamb, 5-7-5 haiku, Ode, writing backwards, alliteration, spoken word, simile’, personification, four-line stanza and six-word haiku are some of the topic covered on the first 10 days of KidPoWriMo.


KidPoWriMo Day 4 ~ We owe it to odes

Happy 4th of July! It’s Independence Day in the United States and much of the country is celebrating with a day off, singing patriotic songs, cooking out and watching fireworks.

Some patriotic songs have lyrics that were originally poems which were later set to music. So, for today, it seems the right thing to do is to talk about the ode.

Poetic word of the day: “ode” (click here to read the definition on

Now that you know what “ode” means, you can find odes almost anywhere. And if you are going to write an ode, you know you will be writing with a lot of respect and honor for the person or object of your poem, though the style of poem you choose to write may vary.

Click here to read a famous poetic example of an “ode” by Pablo Neruda: “Ode to my Socks” (on

The words to the hymn: “Ode to Joy” are poetry, and there are more than one version of the poem, but the melody to the song is so famous, you would recognize it if I started humming it. I won’t have to, because when you turn on the television, you will find it is the background music for many commercials and is the theme for numerous movie soundtracks. Since we are working with poetry here, my point is that poetry often inspires music. I wonder: would the music ever have been written if it wasn’t for the poem?

On this patriotic day, I want to share the poetic words to “America the Beautiful” (click to hear on YouTube). Can we call the words to this song an “ode”? I think so.

PROMPT: Is there a person or an object that is very important to you? Write an ode. You can use rhyme (from Day 1) and/or iambs (from Day 2). You may use haiku. If you do, feel free to write a series or string of haiku to make your ode. Otherwise, you may use any style of poetry you like.

PARENTS WITH YOUNGER CHILDREN: Talk about something that is important in your family and discuss what you would put in an ode about that thing. The family car may be very important to your family and an ode will celebrate this fact. You might talk about what you would put in an ode to each other [i.e.: if mom or dad writes an ode to the child(ren) or the child(ren) will write an ode to the parents or grandparents]. If you have recently lost someone who was close to your child(ren), talk about making and ode to them. An older person should write down what the child says. Then pick out words that are iambs or that you can rhyme and write those words down, too. Your child(ren) may start telling you their poems. Be ready to write them down and save them.

If I am inspired to write an ode, I might write one for you to thank you for reading and sharing this project.