Category Archives: Nature

Winter Dance

Winter Dance”

Opening:   A single snowflake floats through the air, spins, leaps, settles on the nose of a fine red fox. What is a fox to do?

Other animals share with fox what they do in the winter. Squirrel gathers acorns. Turtle buries deep in the mud. Caterpillar wraps itself in a chrysalis.

But none of that will work for fox.

Until another fox comes along.

This book promotes creative nonfiction and beautiful lyrical language.

TITLE: Winter Dance

AUTHOR: Marion Dane Bauer

ILLUSTRATOR: Richard Jones

PUBLISHER: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2017


CREATIVE COMPONENTS: lyrical, nonfiction


1) In the winter, humans and animals wear winter coats. Design a winter coat for an alien or dinosaur.

2) Create a creative dance movement  for each animal in the story.

3) If a snowman were to take a summer vacation, where would he go? Design a travel pamphlet for his vacation destination. 


To learn more about author Marion Dane Bauer, visit:

To learn more about illustrator Richard Jones, visit:

Creative Thinking Prompt: Create Original Stories Using Why

Creative Thinking Prompt: Create Original Stories Using Why

Why do snakes slither?

Why does a cow “moo?”

Why don’t humans have eyes in the back of their heads?

Why does the sun greet the day and the moon greet the night?

Why does it snow only where it’s cold?

Right away, our minds search for a logical answer to these questions based on the knowledge we already know. For the moment, put that aside. Pick two questions. For each one, use your imagination to develop a mini-story as to why these things happened. The stories can be farfetched like a Tall Tale if you’d like.

Think Deeper: Make up your own why questions and share with a friend.

Creative Thinking Prompt: A Stone’s Story

Creative Thinking Prompt: A Stone’s Story


Upside-down trees swingin’ free,

Busses float and buildings dangle:

Now and then it’s nice to see

The world from a different angle.

-By Shel Silverstein

This poem had me imaging an upside-down world. I wondered what the trees would be reaching for and what forces kept the heavy busses and building dangle. It’s important to take a step back and look at things from a different perspective, like from the viewpoint of something or someone else and image “what if.”

First, look at the pictures below, what does each stone remind you of?

Second, use your imagination to imagine what special powers each stone has.

Third, pick one of the stones and answer the questions next to its picture.

If you were this stone, how might you see the world? How does it feel to be cut in half? How might that affect how you see the world?

What makes up the inside of this stone? Use this to tell its personal story.

Where might this stone live – another planet, deep in a volcano or ocean, etc.? What might you name this stone and why?

What quest did you as this stone take? Tell about your journey.

THINKING DEEPER: Research a stone of your choice. Use this information to write a creative nonfiction story about your stone.