Snow, Squirrels, and Sonya #SOL17



(The view from our second floor bedroom window, which looks out over the Assabet River in Maynard, Massachusetts. It looked particularly frosty one morning after more snow fell.)

Two recent snowstorms in February inspired today’s poem — Snow. I penned this poem during a Writer’s Workshop in my Kindergarten class. I start each workshop with 10 minutes of “no teacher help,” which gives students a chance to settle in and all adults working in my classroom at that moment in time a chance sit at student tables and write alongside them. At the end of workshop time, we sit with feedback partners for about 5-10 minutes, sharing “glows” (compliments) and “grows” (suggestions).* I give full credit to my 5-year old partner that day, Sonya, who suggested I add a squirrel for the snow to tumble onto. Sonya loves squirrels! I happily took her suggestion, and she was thrilled when I read it to the class.


Winter’s carpet covers all in its path.

Fluffy blue-tinged sunny spots,

Crusty white shady spots.

Tumbling from branches onto unsuspecting squirrels searching for food.

How long will it last?

Only spring knows.

— Christie Wyman, 2017

*To learn more about “glows,” “grows,” and feedback partners, see Jennifer McDonough and Kristin Ackerman’s wonderful Conferring with Young Writers: What to Do When You Don’t Know What to Do. (Stenhouse)


This post is part of the annual month-long Slice of Life writing challenge organized by Two Writing Teachers. Join us! It’s my first time slicing!


13 thoughts on “Snow, Squirrels, and Sonya #SOL17

    1. The first 10 minutes are a little “painful” in the beginning, but then they get used to it. Sonya, my feedback partner, asked today if the whole workshop could be “no teacher help.” I told her to go for it! 🙂


  1. I love how your student partner provided a suggestion that you were able to incorporate into their writing. How exciting it must have been for this young writer to see how she could make an impact on an adult writer’s piece!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I love the practice of using glow and grow statements to encourage learners to reflect, Christie. Why don’t you merge your poem and photo and send it to me for the gallery. You can tell your kinders that I asked you to do that. Send them my best wishes and the news that many people are talking about them as snow poets.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. First, I LOVE that you write with your children, and you share your writing with them. What a powerful way to show them that you are a fellow writer. Second, your view is beautiful. I can see how that can provide so much inspiration for writing. I’m writing to you from the beach–where I grew up, but no longer live. I’m visiting. An entirely different view, equally beautiful. I love how nature inspires.

    Liked by 1 person

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