Lauren Thompson

art by

Stephanie Yue

Orchard Books

Good night,/ log/ and splash/y creek. -/ +/-/-/

Good night,/ mous/ies all/ a squeak. -/+/-/-/

Good night,/ cat/tails -/+/-

And moon/light glow. -/-/

Good night,/ min/nows swim/ming slow. -/+/-/-/

Why does this work and how can it help you?

  • Did you notice the diction? Specific word choices that evoke an emotional reaction? Like mousies all a squeak. And minnows swimming slow? Connotation is the feeling a word stirs up. These definite nuances take a story from acceptable to powerful and create an experience for the reader.

  • Did you notice the metrical variance? From four beats per line to two beats per line. This keeps the story from becoming sing-songy. Like music it creates punch where you need it.

The Further Adventures of THE OWL and the PUSSY-CAT

by Julia Donaldson 

art by Charlotte Yoake

Puffin Books

The owl/ and the puss/y cat/ went to sleep. -/--/-/--/

By the light/ of the moon/ so pale. A --/--/-/

Their bea/utiful ring/ was tied with/ a string. -/--/--/-/

In a bow/ round the puss/y cat’s tail. A --/--/--/

They dreamed/ of mice, / and rasp/berry ice, -/-/-/--/

While slum/ber ing cheek/ to cheek. B -/--/-/

But down/ flew a crow/ who unravel/ed the bow. -/--/--/--/

And flew off/ with the ring/ in his beak. B --/--/--/

His beak B -/

His beak B -/

And flew off/ with the ring/ in his beak. B --/--/--/

Why does this work and how can this rhyme scheme help you?

  • Did you notice the end rhyme is every other line? This gives the writer freedom with story, plot and character development. 

  • Did you notice the use of internal rhyme, thereby enhancing its musicality?

  • Did you notice the sharp use of metrical variance, with two stanzas’ having only one hard beat? This throws the reader off, because he is expecting a certain rhythm. A technique for arresting the attention of the reader. 

Tree Song

by Tiffany Stone

art by Holly Hatam

Annick Press Ltd

-Hushhhhhhhhhhh/ warns wind / -/

And whirls/ seed down. A -/-/

-Seed/ lies, si/lent, on/ the ground. A -/-/-/-/

-Oh/ so quiet, -/-/

-Not/ a peep, B -/-/

-Seed/ escapes/ a hung/ry beak. B /-/-/-/

-All/ around -/-/

-Thrums/- noise. C-/-/

-Should/ seed try/ its brand/ new voice? C -/-/-/-/

-Twit/ter. Trick/le. -/-/-

Is it time/ -yet? --/-/

-No/, not now. -/-/

Why does this work and how can it help you?

  • Did you notice the use of onomatopoeia? This technique helps the reader hear the sounds. The reader cannot but help be drawn into the experience.

  • Did you notice that the first line rhymes with nothing? This sets the stage for what follows. And gives the poet freedom.

  • Did you notice the refrain? A refrain emphasizes an idea through repetition. It causes the reader to pause and reflect or creates anticipation.

Hi, Koo


Jon J Muth

art by Jon J Muth

Scholastic Press


are you dreaming

of new clothes?

these leaves

fall forever

my broom awaits.

Why does this work and how can it help you?

  • Haiku is a snap shot of a moment or experience. It embodies sensory images and emotion. 

  • Did you notice the technique of comparison? Repeated twice?


Something else

Together they complete as one particular event.

just add


by Angela Diterlizzi

art by

Smantha Cotterill

Beach Lane Books

Bored,/ ignored,/ or feel/ing down? -/-/-/-/

Need/ some fanc/y in your/ town? -/-/-/-/

Want/ some shine/ upon/ your crown? -/-/-/-/

Just add glitter! / / /

Why does this work and how can it help me?

  • Did you notice the use of the Spondee in the last line? This gives a heightened feeling. Giving an emotional experience for the child. 

  • Did you notice that the last line rhymes with nothing? This gives the writer greater freedom. Children love repeating the line with you.