In the Middle of the Night: Poems From a Wide-Awake House by Laura Purdie Salas & a Giveaway!

Welcome to the next stop on In the Middle of the Night’s blog tour! What a whirlwind! If you missed any of the previous stops, click below for interviews with Laura about how she came up the the idea for these “Poems From a Wide-Awake House,” her writing process, and more. There are also suggestions from teachers on different ways to use In the Middle of the Night in classrooms to support and inspire student writing.

When I first read Laura’s book, I immediately noticed her word choice. Laura has chosen exactly the right words to bring so many everyday household objects to life. A “Mixed-Up Mixing Bowl wobble[s] and sway[s]” in a “bowl ballet.” After a day of pounding the floor, an aching basketball’s “head is sore” and he’s sleeping “in ice.” And who can’t relate to “Lidless Marker’s Lament?” With an aching head and a throat that “feels dry,” this marker is “useless since/you lost my lid.” Angela Matteson’s exuberant illustrations capture the wide range of emotions felt by all the wide-awake objects frollicking through this book.

I shared these poems and more with a fourth grade class at my school as a spark for their writing. They loved the poems and were eager to write their own “wide-awake” poems. Here are just a few.

“Sneaky Button”
by H.

I’m a sneaky button
creeping through the night
clinging to some clothing
to see which one looks right.
Then I see a woodland shirt
that seems to shine with light.

Now the sun is shining
And I am all attached
waiting for my owner
to grab me with with a snatch.
Then
we will go fishing
to get a big fat catch.

 

“Utensils Vs. Pot”
by E.

The pot grabbed the spoon
From its napkin cocoon
The fork went to help,
But he began to yelp.

The clock struck four
When Mr. Spoon opened the drawer
He whacked the pot of soup
And it began to droop.

The pot dropped the spoon
and he began to swoon.
Dang! It’s 6AM so soon!

 

“Pineapple Escape”
by J.

Pineapple feared the big knife
would bring an end to his life.
So he tried to delay
by rolling away.
Now the pineapple
hides out in the stairway.

Your students can write their own wide-awake poems! Laura has created a Padlet where they can share their work and read poems by other students. There are also fun activity sheets available here.

Thank you, Laura and Angela, for this clever, inspiring book! And thank you to Boyds Mills Press for generously donating a copy of In the Middle of the Night: Poems from a Wide-Awake House to one lucky winner. Be sure to leave a comment by Tuesday, March 26th, to be entered in the drawing.

Blog tour links:

Monday, 3/11 Mile High Reading
Tuesday, 3/12 Reflections on the Teche
Wednesday, 3/13 A Year of Reading
Thursday, 3/14 Check It Out
Friday, 3/15 Radio, Rhythm & Rhyme
Sunday, 3/17 Great Kid Books
Monday, 3/18 Simply 7 Interview/Jena Benton blog
Tuesday, 3/19 My Juicy Little Universe
Wednesday, 3/20 Live Your Poem
Thursday, 3/21 Reading to the Core
Friday, 3/22 KidLit Frenzy       Beyond Literacy Link

 

14 thoughts on “In the Middle of the Night: Poems From a Wide-Awake House by Laura Purdie Salas & a Giveaway!

  1. Love your students’ poems. How did they get those great rhymes? It’s so hard to use rhyme and have it make sense in the elementary grades. I struggle with how to lead my students. And humor, too “Now the pineapple hides out in the stairway” is awesome!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Your students’ poems are fantastic! H’s button finding a woodland shirt is fabulous–love the way that ties into the fishing trip at the end. Specifics like that give a poem so much presence. E’s nighttime kitchen battle is so fun to read aloud. And J’s poem gave me the most vivid image of a pineapple rolling around, trying to escape. Like a thriller movie! Thanks so much for introducing your students to IN THE MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT, Catherine, and for sharing a few of their terrific poems here. What a treat for me:>)

    Like

  3. Catherine, thank you for sharing your thoughts and your wonderful student poems. They are clever and fun. The ending of “Utensils Vs. Pot” by E. is just hilarious. “Pineapple Escape” by J. is fraught with fear while “Sneaky Button” by H. awaits the next day adventure. Please send your students my congratulations on a job well done! I’m off to prepare for the final round of the Blog Tour.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Agree with all–you really showed how these poems of imagination and fantasy can support kids’ use of rhyme in a way that maybe more realistic poems make difficult. So inspiring, and what a great book to pair with TOYS GO OUT!

    Liked by 1 person

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