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Kids' poetry improves reading and writing skills @ My Stories And Poems. Kids read stories, write poems, take lessons, and get critiques by published children's author, R. Renée Bembry.

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Oatmeal in Bowl

THEME STORY 2 - Came to School Hungry Poetry Lesson


Young poets - if you are finished reading Theme-Story 1 {Grasshopper}, and you've written your first Theme-Story Poem, you are ready to begin Theme-Story 2 {Because I Came to School Hungry}. After you've completed the story, follow the instructions below.

Bowl of Oatmeal

"Because I Came to School Hungry"

A Little Story by R. Renée Bembry
Bye, Mom,” I said jumping from the van.


Hurrying to dump my backpack near the portable classroom,

I munched on six stale goldfish crackers from my jacket pocket,

and then ran to the playground for a few minutes of free play.


“Gr-r-r-rowl,” roared my near empty stomach as I sat in class

fifteen minutes later. I rolled my eyes at Alex for squinching up

his face when he heard the starving sound. Then I stared at the

math paper lying in the center of my desk— the paper I was

supposed to complete during the first ten minutes of class.

Time was almost up and I’d finished only three of the twenty



Simple arithmetic. Add three rows of three numbers. The kind

of assignment I usually completed as easily as I wrote my name.

But right now, hunger wouldn’t let me stop thinking about the

hot oatmeal I left sitting on the kitchen table this morning.

“You’re too late to eat,” Dad had told me.

Mom said it would be all right for me to eat the porridge in the

vehicle on the way to school. But Dad said he didn’t want me

spilling all over the seat. That I should’ve been more punctual.

But, it wasn’t my fault sleepiness slowed down my teeth brushing

and face washing time. Or that my dumb allergy made me spend

extra time blowing my nose. And it wasn’t my fault I couldn’t find

the red shirt to match my pants, or that once I remembered

putting the shirt in the hamper a few days ago, I had to change

pants to match a different shirt.



Whatever… My get ready for school fiasco doesn’t matter any

more. Well, except for the fact that because I came to school

hungry, my grumbling stomach, that didn’t get to eat its oatmeal

has me thinking about food instead of arithmetic.

“Denise. Do you hear me?” asked Mrs. Washington. 

“Y-y-e-s, Ma’am,” I stuttered gazing up from my incomplete math


“Please write problem sixteen on the board.”

(c) 2007 - All Rights Reserved.


Kids, as you write your second Theme-Story Poem, use the basic

instructions you learned in Lesson 1.

Feel free to go back to that page for a review. It is a good idea to

refresh your memory when you are learning a new technique.

The main difference in writing a poem for Theme-Story 2 compared to the first Theme-Story Poem you wrote is the theme of the story is different. Just like before, the first thing you must do is figure out

what the theme is. Then you will be ready to compose, that is, write

your poem.

Remember to let the poem represent your own thoughts and ideas

while you keep it in line with the Theme-Story.

Once you are through writing, give your poem a title, and send your typed I Came to School Hungry poem to: if you would like a free critique { will critique the first ten Theme-Story 2 poems for free every month!}