Using Wonderopolis to Write Found Poetry

Apr 11, 2013

Phillips Family

We started our found poetry adventure in second grade by visiting Amy Ludwig VanDerwater's found poem, Chicken. I love how Amy explains to students what a found poem is and how she used the passage about chickens to write her found poem.  It was an excellent way to begin the conversation about found poems.

Our second stop in our found poetry adventure was reading some nonfiction passages in Bold and Bright, black-and-white by Dorthy Hinshaw Patent.  I used one of the passages to model creating a found poem and then we created a found poem as a class.  I made copies of the passages in the book and had students work with a partner to create their own found poems.

I believe in writing right along side of my students.  Here is a found poem I created and shared with my students.

Found by Barbara Phillips

in Bold and Bright, black-and-white

mysterious animal



no one knows why.

All we know is

that we love the way

this animal looks.

Another stop in our found poem adventure was reading many found poems in the book The Arrow Finds Its Mark edited by Georgia Heard.  We read and enjoyed together found poems from many authors including J. Patrick Lewis, Rebecca Kai Dotlich and Amy Ludwig VanDerwater.  Each poem shares where the author found the words for the poem including such places as books, websites, road signs and even Twitter.

Our last stop as a class in our found poem adventure was using Wonder #920 Does Every Rose Have a Thorn?.  As a class we underlined words that we found pleasing, that we might want to try and use in a found poem about roses.  Students then worked on using the words, arranging them into a poem.  Below are a few student created poems.

Found by Andrew

from Wonder #920 Does Every Rose Have a Thorn?

Yellow roses represent friendship.

I like yellow roses.

White roses symbolize purity and sincerity.

I like white roses.

Red roses conveys feelings of romance and passion.

I like red roses

and I always will


Found by Lauren

from Wonder #920 Does Every Rose Have a Thorn?

Nearly thornless,

Prickly danger,



Red rose.


Found by Anna

from Wonder #920 Does Every Rose Have a Thorn?

Roses have



The yellow



White roses


purity and sincerity

and red

the most


means love

If you would like to virtually meet author and poet Amy Ludwig VanDerwater be sure to join April's Wonderopolis #WonderChat on Monday, April 15th at 8:00 pm EST.  In honor of National Poetry Month Amy will be our special #WonderChat guest.  She will be sharing how to use Wonder to create poetry with children, including strategies and ideas.


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