A Writer's Playground

Monthly Activities for Kids by Linda Martin Andersen

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    Copyright © 2016 Linda Martin Andersen.

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Posted by lindamartinandersen on January 22, 2013

“WELCOME A NEW FRIEND” by Linda Martin Andersen

“A Writer’s Playground”

A place to find wordplay, writing, and monthly calendar activities for kids and those young at heart.

Kids + Playground = Fun

Or does it?

One year, my older grandson held his birthday party at a community park.  A picnic table provided a spot for refreshments and the park provided the entertainment.  Several of his friends  and a kid who was visiting the park, joined in to shoot baskets and other activities.  It was good to see the birthday party guests welcome  a new friend.  In a split second, the group had to decide whether to accept this person or to tell him to get lost.  Thank goodness they welcomed him.

Have you ever seen kids go from having fun on the playground to being aggressive, sometimes with their best friend? How does it happen?  What makes them turn on each other?  Sometimes, they don’t use self-control, especially if things don’t go their way. 

When I was an elementary School Counselor in Cumberland County, NC, students studied character traits each month. 

January’s character trait is self-discipline, which is defined as self-control.

Instead of suggesting a book title on the topic this month, I have a poem for you.

Joy Acey, a poet and friend, wrote a poem called “My Anger.”  She granted me permission to post it here.  I hope it helps you look at anger in a different way.  Please visit Joy’s website called “Poetry For Kids’ Joy” at http://www.poetryforkidsjoy.blogspot.com/2013/01/my-anger.html You’ll find the poem and activities she suggests for it.

Self-discipline--My Anger--Joy Acey

Questions for Discussion:

1.  Who is the new friend in the poem?

2.  Who did you expect the new friend to be?

3.  In what ways does the person change when he/she gets angry?

4.  Why does the author talk about a “knot?”

5.  What happens when the person holds in anger?

6.   Why does the author call “anger” a friend? Do you?

7.  What words might anger say when it let’s you know something isn’t right?

         Anger might say, “I’m ____________________ you.”

         Tell why here:________________________________________________________________.

8.  Tell about a time a friend helped when you were angry.

9.  Tell about a time you helped a friend who was angry.  How did it make you feel?

10.  What is a temper tantrum?  Does the person in the poem have these?  Explain.

Please share your answers in the comment section below.

Thank you, Joy Acey, for granting permission to post your poem.  It’s just perfect for a discussion about self-discipline. 

CALLING ALL POETS…For more wonderful poems visit “Poetry for Kids Joy” at www.poetryforkidsjoy.blogspot.com for a daily poem and a place for you to post your own.

Thank you for visiting “A Writer’s Playground.” Please come again soon.  Bring a friend. 

Coming soon:  A guest blog by Joyce Hostetter, children’s book author.

Copyright © 2013 Linda Martin Andersen

12 Responses to “WELCOME A NEW FRIEND”

  1. Joan Y. Edwards said

    Dear Linda,
    Thanks for posting an article about self-discipline. Indeed we’ve all been there when our emotions turned to anger. I really enjoyed Joy Acey’s poem called, “My Anger.” She is a great poet. Thank you, Joy, for writing great poetry to share with us every day of the year.

    Celebrate yourselves, Linda and Joy.
    Never Give Up
    Joan Y. Edwards

  2. That was an excellent post. You have a wonderful writing style.

    Thanks so much for sharing it. I really enjoyed reading it very much. You have a wonderful day!

    Enjoy writing?

    Writing Jobs Available –
    Writers Wanted

  3. Maureen Wartski said

    How very true that discipline and self control are so important. We all are faced with decisions whether to act on our best our worst impulses. I think a part of us always remains “the kid on the playground.” A very thoughtful and wise post, Linda.

    • Maureen,
      I like your comment about part of us remaining “the kid on the playground.” Thanks for saying you found the post wise. Joy was the brain-child. I loved the concept of anger she captured in her poetry. I’m glad you enjoyed it too.

  4. I have a hectic week, but I couldn’t resist popping in to say I love Joy’s poem. Your questions are brilliant, Linda. Sorry I don’t have time to answer them. 🙂

    • Tracy,
      Kind words from a dear lady. I’m so glad you got a chance to read Joy’s poem. Thanks for the compliment about the questions being well done. I appreciate that very much. Stop in again when life gives you a breather.

  5. Brilliant. As a writer for younger readers and future teacher, this poem resonates with me. This is a fantastic tool to help the whole class talk openly about anger, without isolating those with a tendency towards negative feelings. Thank you for sharing!

    • Hi Luke Thomas French,
      What a terrific compliment. I will pass your kind words on to Joy Acey, the poet. Please visit her site: wwwpoetryforkidsjoy.blogspot.com. Thanks again. Please stop and visit again.

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