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The Study of Poetry and Literature for Children & Young Adults

Module #1--Poetry Break #2: The Text of a Picture Book with Poem Line Breaks


Miss Bindergarten has a Wild Day in Kindergarten
By Joseph Slate

Adam throws

his hat too high.

Brenda burst

in late.

Christopher says he has to go---

He really cannot wait.


Miss Bindergarten begins-----a wild day in kindergarten.


Danny tends

his drooping beans.


Emily spies

some ants.


Franny lifts her dress and


“I love my fancy pants!”


Miss Bindergarten


a wild day in kindergarten.


Gwen falls

off the stool.


Henry just

won’t share.


Ian sadly tells Miss B,

“We didn’t mean to tear.”


Miss Bindergarten and the librarian

have a wild day in kindergarten.


Jessie drops

the bug jar.


Kiki cuts

her thumb.


Lenny say,

“Uh-oh, Miss B,

we need the nurse to come.”


Miss Bindergarten and

the nurse

have a wild day

in kindergarten.


Matt checks

a chrysalis.


Noah drops

his rock.



oozy painting

is sticking

to her smock.


Patricia trips

and flips

her tray.


Quentin overloads.


Raffie Mack

soaks Sara


his apple juice



Miss Bindergarten and

the cafeteria helper

have a wild day in



Tommy dumps


too much dirt.


Ursula’s seed pack



Vicky pour

in Waaaaaaay

too much,



cardboard carton



Now Miss Bindergarten and

the custodian

have a wild day in








Xavier skins

his knee.


Yolanda say,

“Come look,

Miss B!—


Zack set the butterflies free!”


Miss Bindergarten and



an even wilder day in kindergarten.


“Sometimes even a wild day,”

says Miss B,

“turns up something wonderful to see.”


Introduction: Miss Bindergarten Has a Wild Day in Kindergarten is a children's picture book by Joseph Slate and illustrated by Ashley Wolff. I chose it because of the bright watercolor illustrations and that it didn't have a lot of text to type. After reading it several times aloud, I started playing with the cadence, deciding which syllable to emphasize. Typing then became fun as I changed the line format to reflect the changes in intonation I was making.


Poetry Extension: This is a fun book to incorporate into classroom activities. Not only does the text flow in a rhyming pattern but variations of "Miss Bindergarten has a wild day in kindergarten," are used as a refrain. Then, and I had to type half the book before I realized it, it is an alphabet book, each successive mischievous child's name begins with the next letter of the alphabet.
Use this book in  grades Pre-K and up through second. After it is read once, the kids will pick up on the refrain and can join in as that is repeated. After they have heard the book, pause on subsequent readings so that children can enjoy shouting out the correct word or phrase. For example,
"Brenda burst in late,
Christopher says he has to go---
he really cannot _______________
An alternate exercise could focus on the rhyming words. What words rhyme with late? Do any of these fit into this space?
Children will enjoy the descriptive words and come up with their own ideas for why Brenda is late or Christopher cannot wait.
An exercise could also focus on the theme of the book, sometimes everything works out in the end--even--when you've had a difficult day.
Slate, Joseph. 2005. Miss Bindergarten has a Wild Day in Kindergarten. New York: Dutton. ISBN 0525470840

Click on the following link to progress to the next poetry break.

Module #1--Poetry Break #3