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Education Matters

Words in Motion

April 29th, 2014

By Jessica Barry

As the saying goes, kids say the darndest things. Between the misnomers, the mispronunciations and the misunderstandings, it’s no wonder children are entertaining conversationalists!  Yet I’m sure everyone can agree that there are also times when childish musings are surprisingly wise and insightful. As a coordinator of Words in Motion, a Municipal poetry program, I had the pleasure of reading the thoughts and feelings of our region’s youngest poets. Many poems focused on topics near and dear to most kids, such as their favourite video games or sports, as well as how much they enjoy playing with their friends. However, there were also poems that sent a thoughtful message to the reader, which reminded me that while “kids may say the darndest things”, if you stop and listen to what children are saying you may just agree that “out of the mouths of babes often come gems”.

This year, Words in Motion received over 100 poetry submissions from elementary school students. Such great participation would not been possible if not for the hard work and support of the wonderful teachers, who painstakingly deciphered their students’ writing, typed every poem and submitted them into the program. Once all the poems were collected, 5 poetry lovers, the judges of Words in Motion, gathered in the Future Forward office to discuss which poems should be selected. After much deliberation, the judges chose 27 student poems to be showcased throughout the region, a few of which I am excited to share with you. Enjoy!


Shaafa Babar, a Grade 4 student at the Fort McMurray Islamic School, wrote this simple yet beautiful poem about the signs we can all recognize as winter’s impending arrival.

An Invitation

Leaf falls on my shoe,

Like an invitation card

Yours truly, Winter….

I think we can all relate to Vanessa Boakye, a Grade 3 student at Father Turcotte School, who really, really, REALLY wants a pet, but for one reason or another, her parents just won’t give in!

I Want a Pet


I want a pet but,

I don’t have one yet.

You wonder why?

I’ll try not to cry.

I love my dad but we don’t always agree.

Are you surprised, by this, from me?

I want to get a cat, but dad thinks they’re more like rats.

I asked for a bunny, he said they’re too much money.


Next I asked for a cute, cuddly puppy.

He suggested I get guppy,

“A FISH,” I yelled,

That’s not my wish.


I wanted to stamp my feet,

But Dad would think, I was a creep.

When I wondered why

I don’t have a pet, yet.

I started to cry.


I don’t think I will even try…

Cause now, I am dying to have a scaly golden fish.


You would think that every little girl wants to be a princess, right? Not Genevieve Gauthier! In this poem, Genevieve, a Grade 6 student at École Boreal, shows her budding feminist attitude as she ponders the “fairy tale”, yet unrealistic, life of a princess.


French Version

Toutes les princesses ont leur prince

Les filles attendant leur prince

Il ya a Cendrillon qui

Trouve son prince par chance


La belle au bois dormant

Elle a dormit toutes ces années et

Quand elle se reveille elle a un

Amoureux c’est comme de la magie!!


Ou comme blanche neige

Comme pour elle, c’est facile

Elle est gentile, belle et elle a

Des bonnes amies comme moi


Pour les princesses c’est

Facile d’avoir un amoureux dans des livres

Mais en réalité c’est moins facile mais

Comment je devrais savoir j’ai onze ans

English Version

Every princess has their prince

Girls wait for their prince

There’s Cinderella who

Found her prince by luck


Sleeping beauty slept for

All these years and when

She woke up she has a boyfriend

Like M A G I C!!


Or Snow White for her

It’s easy, she’s nice, pretty

And has good friends

Like me I have good friends.


For all princesses it’s easy

To get a boyfriend in books but

In reality I don’t know how easy it is

But then again I’m eleven how should I know.






Manorma Joshi, a Grade 4 student at Timberlea Public School, is the author of this lovely rhyming poem that reminds us of the beautiful, colourful world we live in.



Red is for roses and blue is for the sky.

White is for sparkling snow or a cloud sailing by.

Silver is for the rain with the sun shining through.

Yellow is for butter and buttercups too.

Black is for blackbirds and gold for their bills.

Green is for leaves and for meadows and hills.

Grey is for night with no colours.

Morning is for all of them shining again.


Jane Gibson, a Grade 5 student at École St. Paul, wrote this powerful poem about how good it feels to finally achieve your goal. According to Jane, all you need is a little persistence and perseverance. A smile doesn’t hurt, either!


When You've Arrived


When you've arrived,

You'll know.

You will feel something

In the pit

Of your stomach,

You will also feel it

In your bones,

And to the tip,

Of your toes.


My arrival was

Through dance.

I gained confidence,

I felt self respect.

And I built on

My successes.


Although I stumbled

I always got up,

Pointed my toes,







If you like these poems and want to read more, visit the RMWB Words in Motion blog ( to see all the selected poems for 2014.

Tags: education

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