About Hands on Stanzas

Hands on Stanzas, the educational outreach program of the Poetry Center of Chicago places professional, teaching Poets in residence at Chicago Public Schools across the city. Poets teach the reading, discussion, and writing of poetry to 3 classes over the course of 20 classroom visits, typically from October through April. Students improve their reading, writing, and public speaking skills, and participating teachers report improved motivation and academic confidence. You can contact Cassie Sparkman, Director of the Hands on Stanzas program, by phone: 312.629.1665 or by email: csparkman(at)poetrycenter.org for more information.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Sniffing Exercise

For this lesson, I brought film canisters of different smells, such as coffee, garlic, cloves, maple syurp, popcorn, and we discussed how scent can evoke memories of people or events immediatley upon smelling it. The students wrote poems based on memories of a scent.

Leslie M
3rd grade

4th of July
All the smell of smoke
The smell of popcorn
Reminds me of when
I went to see a movie
In the theater
The smell of coffee
Reminds me of my mom
Because everyday
At 5 o’clock in the morning
Shem makes coffee for work
The smell of cookies
Reminds me of
The baking of my sister
The smell of the sea
It smells like salt
Honey reminds me
Of bees
And the pancakes
Of my mom and sister
Because they always
Put honey.

Andrea C
3rd grade

garlic reminds me
of my mom
when she puts garlic
on the soft, hot bread
my mom cooks spaghetti
and I eat it with the sauce

Jocelyn B
3rd grade

when I am sleeping
I smell something sweet
That is cookies or bread
I wake up
And that makes me happy
And a little hot
When I eat cookies
And I don’t fall asleep anymore
When I sleep
I fell soft in my bed
When everyone wakes up
And when I’m in my room
It smells like orange flowers
Smell sweet everywhere.

Ethan R
3rd grade

The smell of the coffee
That my dad drinks
Everyday with cream

The smell of popcorn
That sound of popping
And the smell of butter

The smell of oranges
Is like orange juice
Drinking in every cup

The smell of syurp
Is like everyone eating
Pancakes or waffles

The smell of chocolate
Is like my favorite candy

The smell of smoke on machines
Is like it’s working hard when it’s on

The smell of candy
Is like I eat it everyday

Giselle S
3rd grade

When I smell café
It reminds me of my grandpa
When I am sitting with him
Drinking café with milk

When I smell smoke
It reminds me of my grandpa
Smoking outside in a chair

Daniella M
3rd grade

when I smell popcorn
it makes me remember
about someone graved
a knife in the night
and made three holes
in two wheelies

the smell of smoke
remembers me
of my cousins house
on fire
the fire burned
my cousins forehead
and hair

Michael R

the thing that reminds me
of something
is the Downy in my clothes
it reminds me of my mom
when she is washing
it reminds me of her
always washing clothes
and reminds me of my brother
because he’s always clean
and smells like cologne

Kimberly T

what I smell
I smell chocolate
Sweet sweet chocolate
Creamy soft
Crunchy crunchy
I love chocolate
But when I think
Of chocolate
I also think
Of pimples
So I rather
Not eat creamy
Oh well

Dirty Dog Smell
Cierra Torres

6th grade

Dirty dog smell
Is very stinky
And when you don’t
Give them a bath
It smells worse
And reminds me
Of under
My brother’s bed.

Christian E
6 th

when I smell mud
I think of soccer
Because when I
Was on a team
I always got mud
On my shirt
Scoring goals
And falling
And they push me
And I fall on the grass
And get mud on me
Especially when it’s raining
And there was a whole
Bunch of mud
On the grass
So when we won the game
We all threw ourselves
In the mud

Fernando G
6th grade

The smell of hot dog’s
Remind me not of a person
But of a time
Fourth of July
The smell of every good food
And late at dark
The fireworks light
The night
Watch out dad!
It may still work!
If you go closer
You might not
Go to work.
My dad tries to stop
But instead he hops
Over the fireworks
He’s safe
This is why hot dogs
Remind me about
The 4th of July

Erika H
8th grade

coffee reminds me
of Sunday mornings
the family around
the table. Talking
without arguing
and calm
is how we are

Raquel S

That hand sanatizer
So strong
It reminds me
Of my uncle
Smells so strong
Smells so dirty
Smells like a bum
I guess I don’t like
The smell of
So sweet
So calm
Reminds me of
This lady
Always pinched
My cheeks I
Always got
Mad until one
Day she left
I wish she were

Jorge G

when I smell coffee
I remember the morning
In the school
In the computer class
Library room
It smells like coffee
In the hall
And also in the room

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