The last activity for my poetry week
is an activity I learned from a teacher I worked with several years ago.  I thought she was (and is) brilliant and want
to be just like her!
We use the poem If I Were in Charge
of the World
 by Judith Viorst as a
model and write our own version.
If I Were In Charge of the World
If I were in charge of the world
I’d cancel oatmeal,
Monday mornings,
Allergy shots, and also Sara Steinberg.

If I were in charge of the world
There’d be brighter nights lights,
Healthier hamsters, and
Basketball baskets forty eight inches lower.

If I were in charge of the world
You wouldn’t have lonely.
You wouldn’t have clean.
You wouldn’t have bedtimes.
Or “Don’t punch your sister.”
You wouldn’t even have sisters.

If I were in charge of the world
A chocolate sundae with whipped cream and nuts would be a vegetable
All 007 movies would be G,
And a person who sometimes forgot to brush,
And sometimes forgot to flush,
Would still be allowed to be
In charge of the world.

By Judith Viorst
Just as in the Grandmother’s brook poem we
first read the poem two times.  Then we
read the poem line by line and discuss. 
Some things we discuss:
Who is the speaker?  How old is the speaker?  How do you know this?
Does the speaker have allergies?
Why would the speaker want brighter night
What happened to the speaker’s hamster?
Why would the speaker want lower basketball baskets?
How does the speaker feel sometimes?
Does the speaker have a sister?  How does he feel about her? What makes you
think this?
Then we talk about how to speaker really let
the reader in to know his or her inner-most feelings and thoughts.  By reading the poem I feel like I actually
know the speaker!
I show students the graphic organizer and I
model how to fill in.   I send students off to their seats to fill in
the graphic organizer.  We stop A BUNCH
and so a mid-workshop share.  Students
share whole class, with a partner, with their table groups and so on.  This is an activity in which the more
students discuss the better and more thoughtful the responses are.
After students finish the graphic organizer I
call students to the carpet and model how to fill in the poem frame. After
students fill in the poem they can illustrate with their own pictures!

Mandy Gregory is a 2007 and 2012 Teacher of the Year. She has taught 4th, 3rd, and 2nd grade in both the general education and inclusion setting. She is the owner and creator of the Teaching Tips website ( and has over 10 years of experience. She is married with two beautiful children.

2017-07-05T22:38:39+00:00 Categories: Uncategorized|Tags: , , |

Subscribe to our mailing list

* indicates required

Email Format