Sunday, November 3, 2019

Writing with Your Halloween Candy

Are you more like candy corn or lifesavers?  I ask students this question in one of my writing workshops. 

It is a way to get kids to think more creatively—more imaginatively—more divergently—which (if you haven’t met me) is a “soap box” issue of mine.  I talk about it constantly.  It keeps me awake at night.  Because I truly believe our students won’t be able to solve the extremely challenging problems of the future if we don’t work on developing their creative thinking skills today.

So, if you are a teacher (or just a random person reading this blog) and you are staring at that large bowl of candy that you weren’t able to hand out last week because of the inclement weather (okay, gale-force winds and rain) that blanketed much of the country on Halloween – try this out:
Which candy are you most like?  Least like?  Why?

You can write about it. Talk about it. Turn it into a poem.  If you teach school, have your students bring in a piece of candy from their Halloween stash—the candy that most represents/ reflects them.  Not their favorite one. Not the one they’d most like to eat.  The one that is most like them.  Have them write about it, talk about it, turn it into poem…

Here’s mine: 

I’m a pack of lifesavers, mostly sturdy and strong. Except for the hole in the middle of who I am.  That’s where the loved ones I’ve lost used to be.  But around those empty spaces are determined circles of sweetness.  And color. And resilience.  That’s who I am.  I go on.

(You can also choose candy for some of the great characters in children’s literature: What candy would be Harry Potter? Or Hermione?)

Your turn.