Casanova Can

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Casanova Can

 

Casanova caterpillar

Had a bold ambition,

He wouldn’t be a butterfly

(Though that was the tradition).

He’d seen the others growing wings

And didn’t fancy that,

Instead he’d shed some letters

And turn into a cat.

Cousin Costa chaffed him.

“It cannot be”, he said,

“Come on Casanova,

You’ve really lost your head.”

“I can! I can! I can!”

Casanova cried.

He could do most anything

If he only tried.

And when it was the moment

To weave his own cocoon,

Casanova said “Farewell,

I’ll be a real cat soon.”

And so with bated breath,

(It really was a thriller),

He wished away the e and r

And the entire pillar.

And then oh joy of joys

The time came to be free,

And life was so much lighter,

As just a C-A-T.

By Kylie Covark

“The Singing Spaniel” with Teacher Notes

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“The Singing Spaniel”

Lee and Jazz

On the grass

Ukulele in hand

Learning fast

Tune in the air

Jazz’s ears prick

She starts to sing

Learning real quick

Songs in the garden

Float down the street

A boy and his dog

Sounding so sweet

A bond forged in music

A love made to last

The sounds of friendship

In music is cast

Jeanie Axton

Our son Lee and our Cocker Spaniel Jazz with Zepp the Jack Russell as an audience, have a sing a long in the garden.

 

Teacher Notes: Heres a fun December activity:

Can you write a “Dog” song. You could choose a popular tune or make one up.

Make a dog mask and perform your song to the class

 

 

This adorable dog craft uses a printable template and a paper plate to make a project suitable for a pets, mammals, or letter D theme or just for fun.

If you cut out holes instead of using the template eyes, you can convert your dog craft to a dog mask.  Attach a paint stir stick or tongue depressor to allow your child to hold it up to their face.

Materials:

  • grey paint and paintbrush (or you can keep his face white if you don’t feel like painting).
  • black marker for freckles
  • paper plate
  • something to color with (or color printer),
  • scissors
  • glue
  • paper
  • printer to print templates from internet

Instructions:

  • Paint the bottom of the paper plate grey or any colour you choose (or you can leave it white if you prefer).
  • Print out the craft template of choice.
  • Colour (if using the black and white version of the craft) and cut out the template pieces.  Most of the pieces are simple enough shapes for young children to cut out, but if needed, an adult can help with some of the harder pieces (the ears and the hair).
  • Glue the pieces to the plate to make a dog face:
    • Glue the ears onto either side of the head.
    • Glue the hair onto the center top of the head.
    • Glue the eyes onto the face under the hair (or cut out holes for eyes in a mask).
    • Glue the eyebrows above the eyes.
    • Glue the nose under the eyes.
    • Glue the mouth under the nose.
    • Use a black marker to add a few freckles on either side of the nose.

Have fun

 

 

 

A Fluffy Thermometer

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A Fluffy Thermometer

 

There’s plenty of ways

to tell if the day is

too hot or cold

without being told.

 

You could try and catch

a fluffy pet cat

then watch and observe

to see how it’s curved.

 

When days are too hot

it’s likely as not

that cat’s all sprawled-out

in some shaded spot.

 

When researchers test

what temperature’s best

for comfort of cats

they find out these facts.

 

Those felines agree

that eighteen degrees

is purr-fectly warm

for cat’s furry form.

 

Then when it’s too cold

those pussycats fold

up cosy and still

to keep out the chill.

 

by Celia Berrell

 

While the weather is warming up in Australia, winter is well on its way in the northern hemisphere.  Does that mean there will be more outside cats curled up when I go to visit?  Living in the tropics, I think even eighteen degrees is decidedly chilly!  What’s your purrfect temperature?

I Can, I Can’t

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I CAN, I CAN’T

 

I can, I can’t, the difference is

One tiny little letter

‘won’t use the “T”, or I will be

Worse off, instead of better

 

But if I say “I can, I can”

My confidence will soar

And hope will come my way because

I opened up its door

 

“I can, I can!” will make me brave

My thinking it will change

And pocketsful of obstacles

Will vanish down the drain!

 

And if I cultivate “I can”

“I can’t” will sound so weird

And soon I’ll wonder where they went

Those things that I once feared

 

 

Lenny McGoo             ©         2017

The Wrong Wheels

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The Wrong Wheels

 

When the humans were asleep

In nightgowns and nightcaps,

The midnight rat would creep inside

And feast upon their scraps.

 

The midnight rat was crafty,

The midnight rat was sly,

He’d always slink in shadows,

Unseen by human eyes.

 

But there was someone watching,

With eyes that gleamed in black,

The midnight rat could see him:

The cunning household cat.

 

The midnight rat was agile,

And cautious, quick and smart,

That cat could never catch the rat,

When the house was clothed in dark.

 

So the cat approached politely

And he bent down very low.

“Oh rapturous rat I love your work,

I do admire you so.

 

“But I would make a suggestion,

If I could be so bold.

A king like you should never dine

On scraps so soggy and cold.

 

“The humans have cake in the daytime,

And bread and scones and pies,

There’s so much good food in the daytime,

You wouldn’t believe your eyes.

 

“The only thing you really need,

Ask anyone who steals,

If you are going to make a getaway –

Is a brand new set of wheels.”

 

The rat told him to keep away

And ran off with his loot,

But then he started pondering

As he chewed on soggy fruit.

 

He was the Midnight Rat!

The cleverest rat by far!

It would be a snap for him

To build a speedy car.

 

And build away he did,

Though you may find it surprising,

The rat had made that car

By the time the sun was rising.

 

And he could smell the breakfast

And he didn’t stop to think,

The car whizzed straight inside

Faster than a blink.

 

And what a tale of glory!

What a momentous day,

The rat snatched a delectable haul

And was making his getaway.

 

But outside the car slowed

And the cat caught him with ease…

Instead of using tyres,

He had used four wheels of cheese.

 

As he watched them melting on the road

The rat knew we was done,

His greatest foe was not the cat

But that infernal sun.

 

The cat smiled a wicked grin,

“I never thought of that!

I think my favourite meal might be

Grilled cheese à la rat.”

 

By Kylie Covark

Feathers Fur or Fins with Teacher Notes

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Feathers Fur or Fins.

 

Vertebrates are covered

In spikes, feathers and scales

Most mammals wear fur

Skin covers humans and whales

 

With skeletons covered

In scaled skins.

Fish breathe under water

And glide with their fins.

 

With skeleton covered

In thick armored plates

Eyes and nose above water

The crocodile waits

 

With skeleton covered

In skin soft and cool

Tadpoles become frogs

In creek, river and pool.

 

With hollow skeletons

And fragile feather

Birds swoop and soar

In flocks together

 

With skeletons covered

In thick fur or fine hair

Bats, seals and elephants

Share earth water and air

 

Robyn Youl

 

 

 

Teaching Notes:

A basic introduction to Taxonomy – VertebratesAnimals with Backbones.

The five classes of Vertebrates are introduced in this poem.

Verse 1. General introduction about vertebrates who have spines.

Verse 2. Fish

Verse 3. Reptiles

Verse 4. Amphibians

Verse 5. Birds

Verse 6. Mammals

Activities:

English:

* Writing Acrostic Poetry: The human spine has 33 Bones. Snakes have 200-400! Construct a human spine from card. Each child makes an individual vertebrae. (Google – labeled vertebrae) Names it and writes an acrostic on that vertebrae about a member of ONE of the five classes of vertebrates. String them together for a Class Backbone mobile.

Use a different color card for each of the five classes of vertebrates

Drama:   Dem Bones:

Emphasizes the magic boney structure of our skeleton!!

Creates body awareness.

With this old favorite students can enjoy a complete lower/upper body shakeout work out

Move each section of the body after each line. Example: after line one shake the right foot & shake the left foot

Chorus after Verse 1 Actions:

  • Only the lower body does the skeleton dance.
  • Students move freely to invent their own dance.
  • Moving in slow motion is a real challenge.
  • Students can pair and mirror image

Chorus after Verse 2.

  • Actions as for Verse 1.
  • Only the upper body does the skeleton dance

Final Chorus Repeat: The WHOLE skeleton dance.

Dem Bones is also the basis for Skeleton (Simon) Says. Skeleton says: Shake the foot bone/bend the backbone/shake the knee bone/shake the finger bones/nod the head bone etc

 

Chorus:

Dem Bones, them bones, dere my bones

Dem bones dem bones dere my bones

Dem bones dem bones dere my bones

Doin’ the skeleton dance

The foot bone connected to the leg bone

The leg bone connected to the knee bone

The knee bone connected to the thigh bone

The thighbone connected to the backbone

The backbone connected to the neck bone

The neck bone connected the head bone

Doin’ the skeleton dance

Chorus: Lower body only

The hand bone connected to the wrist bone

The wrist bone connected to the elbow bone

The elbow bone connected to the shoulder bone

The shoulder bone connected to the neck bone

The neck bone connected to the head bone

Chorus: Upper body only

Chorus Repeat: The WHOLE skeleton dance.

Humanities: Endless possibilities! Slots in well with any current ecology projects!

 

 

 

Pigeon Grey

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Pigeon Grey

 

 

Way down passed our shed,

Where the realm of humans ends,

‘Mongst the mottled bottle brushes

Live a hundred feathered friends.

 

And ninety-nine of those

Cavort and romp and play,

And the only one left out

Is poor old Pigeon Grey.

 

The magpies are quite striking

And the honey-eaters fair,

The rosellas are spectacular;

It’s tricky not to stare.

 

They gather in the bird bath

Where they primp and preen all day,

But when Pigeon tries to join them

They squawk, “Ew! Get away!”

 

 

 

And Pigeon Grey sighs deeply

Then he sits off on his own,

He watches on with envy

Wishing he was not alone.

 

If only they would speak to him

Those other birds would find

That Pigeon Grey is funny.

He is clever. He is kind.

 

But they all look down their beaks

At his feathers drab and grey,

And then rather than converse with him

They just squawk “Get away!”

 

Then one day there is twittering,

The garden is in shock.

Pigeon Grey has made a friend;

The new bird on the block.

 

And the whispers are quite snippy,

“That new bird she must be dull.

Perhaps another pigeon

Or an imbecilic gull!”

 

But the honey-eater sees her

And she has to look once more.

This new bird is not dull at all.

This bird is not a bore.

 

Her feathers start as brightest blue,

Then yellow, red, and green.

If the garden was a monarchy

Then she would be its queen.

 

There’s a hustle then to meet her,

A bustle and a fuss.

“You don’t have to sit with Pigeon Grey,

Come here and sit with us!”

 

But the lorikeet shakes her head,

“I’d rather stay right here.

The world seems so much shinier

When Pigeon Grey is near.”

 

The other birds they bristle,

“It simply can’t be true.

He is drab and dreary,

He’s not half as bright as you.”

The lorikeet looks surprised,

“You don’t know him at all.

Pigeon Grey is marvellous,

He’s famed beyond your wall.

 

“Have you not heard his music,

As he wakes the morning sun?

If you’ve spent the afternoon with him

Has it not been loads of fun?

 

“Have you seen him cheer a baby bird

As it first takes to the skies?

Have you heard him tell a funny tale

With laughter in his eyes?

 

“Have you come to him with worries

And been sure he’d listen well?

Have you taken on the sage advice

That he will freely tell?”

 

“If you’ve ever asked him for his help

Did he make you wait?

I’m sure that you must know the truth.

Pigeon Grey is great!”

 

Pigeon Grey is humbled

But as he looks around,

His neighbours will not meet his eyes;

They all stare at the ground.

 

But then a tiny bird agrees,

“Yes, Pigeon Grey’s the best!

He taught me to be brave

When I was scared to leave the nest.”

 

And others pipe up too

With their tales that spring to mind.

Indeed, each bird does seem to know

That Pigeon Grey is kind.

 

Way down passed our shed,

Where the realm of humans ends,

‘Mongst the mottled bottle brushes

Live a hundred feathered friends.

 

And each one of those hundred

Cavort and romp and play,

But the one they all love best of all

Is dear old Pigeon Grey.

By Kylie Covark