Remodeling the Imagination

You will never be bored in Ms. Barrett’s afternoon class. These writers fight aliens from Jupiter and fall from their beds into magical and creepy worlds. With the help of Shel Silverstein’s “Sarah Cynthia Sylvia Stout Would Not Take the Garbage Out,” they create bedrooms that are so messy, devils shoot “stink bugs at [them] from eighteen miles below” the bed. You will discover so many wonderful ideas when it’s time to remodel your home. By simply adding an elevator, you can travel out of your house to “Mount Olympus so [you] can talk to Zeus about creating world peace.” I loved the enthusiasm and imagination I encountered every time I entered the classroom. Congratulations to these writers on their amazing stories!

Terri Schexnayder
Badgerdog Teaching Artist

The Aliens Are Coming!

Wow! Did you just hear about the alien attack that’s going to happen this Friday? I better form a team of courageous alien-hunters, so we can save the world. I sure hope others believe me, because the first ten people I asked at the Super Heroes conference just said, “No! Aliens aren’t real!” Next I went to Target and found some brave individuals who agreed. “Yes! We believe in aliens!” Whew! (Maybe they just said that because they were annoyed at me for begging to join them.)

Okay, at least I now have my alien-fighting team together.  First, we must purchase alien-sucking machines and train my army how to pull in multiple outer space creatures all at one time. Hmmm, we sure need guns—any suggestions out there? Great idea! I hadn’t thought about getting them from a military surplus store.

We are equipped and ready. Let’s go suck up some aliens!

Jayden Besa

In My Delicious Room

In my room
there is no broom,
but neither are there LEGOs.
Rather, rules to follow and things to learn.
Pieces of paper, but not to burn.
With a closet so big, it sucked me in.
In my room, it smells like strawberries,
and the desk tastes like raspberries.

With a blanket of cotton—3D, not 2D—
I am floating on a cloud, eating cotton candy.
Pillows to overlap my bed, covered with animal stuffies.
In my room, there are teacher supplies—staplers, scissors, and sweets
(no one will be suspicious as to why I have such treats!).
My room is pink and edible like watermelon jelly.

Bella Chu

My Awesome Name

My name is delicious and savory like unicorn poop, which is ice cream.
My name is the color of a very bright rainbow.
It is like cupcakes with sprinkles and a scent of sugar.
My name feels like soft pillows,
making the sound of breezy winds mixed with fiery lava bubbles.

When I say my name, chocolate bursts with flavor into my mouth!
My name is sprinkle ice cream cookies.
I am Soraya Contreras.

Soraya Contreras

My Room Is So Messy

My room is so messy,
I don’t know what to do!
Oh, I better clean it
very, very soon.
I get home from school
and walk into my room. Aggghhh!
Rats and bats, cats and hats.
Oh, no. What do I do?
I need to clean my room
very, very soon.

The next day, my friends come in
and then walk right outside
like a flash before my eyes.
I promised them I would clean my room—
they trusted me it was safe to go in,
but Fred and Ted wear masks to be sure.
“I did my best to clean my rotten, yellow-smelling room!” I cry.
They walk out again—darn, I really tried!

I am playing on my phone.
My mom moans and drones, “Clean your room!”
in the worst tone in the world.
“No way!” I mumble to myself. “If you don’t want to see it,
then I will just throw you in.” Bye, bye!

Nikki Dominguez

My Name

I’ve always thought the name James sounded calm
like a peach tree in bloom.
When I say it, the taste of fresh
summer strawberries stays on my tongue.

James Doerr

My Dream House

Dreams, houses, and dream houses. What would yours be like? For starters, mine is an exact replica of the Empire State Building, but with a twist on the interior. For example, I have an elevator leading to Mount Olympus so I can talk to Zeus about creating world peace.

My dream house includes a cinema room with a lifetime of supply of chocolate and Harry Potter movies. The bedroom wall is blue, reflected through with fish tanks located on every side. I have some weird stuff, like a roomful of unicorns. There’s even a space in which I worship my pets by hanging plastic heads of them all around. I add a room made of diamonds as sparkly as my dog’s eyes! The chair is made of jewelry, and there is plenty of space for my dazzling earrings. Finally, my walk-in closet is 1,000,000 miles long and contains giraffes and mountains of sneakers.

Everyone who visits, gets a pair of earrings and a quail. Now that you have my incredible ideas to build a dream home, the sky’s the limit!

Alice Dorning

My Name

My name is a proud and wealthy country.
It is silk on my cheek after the end of a bad day.
It tastes like peach cobbler with vanilla ice cream
and sounds like an ocean of joy.
It smells like bacon sizzling when you first wake up.
It is a rainbow of the sweetest colors.
The beautiful name of Britain.

Britain Emerson

My Squeaky Clean Room

My room smells like a big bottle of air freshener (even though I don’t use it). When I touch the floor, it feels like a big pile of smooth snow. I just love looking at my room because it is so beautiful and tidy. When I taste my room, there is the flavor of flowers for some reason. When I listen to my room, it sounds like the wind rushing against my ears. My classic, clean room!

When people come over to visit, they are so jealous of how spotless it is. They always say, “Your room is as fresh as a new strawberry!” When I look at the walls of my room, I imagine gazing up into the sky—there are cloud stickers all over—like the ones in “Toy Story.” I love my room. It’s so neat.

Tony Gil

My Room

In my room, there are two million LEGOs all over my floor and another three million in my drawers. It’s like I am swimming in a sea of clothes; there are so many shirts, skirts, pants, and socks piling up and tumbling out of my closet. They are like my best friends because they hover over me.

When I lay down on my pink bed cover, the soft chocolate brown blanket eats me as I try to go to sleep. I sink into another dimension of time and space where there are rainbows and unicorns spitting out sprinkles. It’s an amazing valley of dark green grass. I am sad when I have to leave, but I have school tomorrow. I must return to my messy room.

Faith Guerrero

My Name

Hi, my name is Elijah, but you can call me Eli. It came from the one the creator of Marvel named his daughter. Yes, my name began with a girl! Here is the rest of the story.

My family thought I was going to be a girl, and my dad really liked the name Eliza. But, when they found out I was a boy, they decided on Elijah. Elijah stands for “having fun” in Iranian. I live up to my name when I am playful and laugh a lot. My name sounds like the inside of a seashell and tastes like chocolate-covered strawberries. It smells like a heavenly aroma. Elijah feels like a soft marshmallow. This is my name, and I love it!

Elijah Hadivincheh


My dirty, dirty room is as smelly as a person who has not showered for years! It is full of slimy footprints from my sister coming in and out. Nerf guns, big and small, plus piles of dog fur cover my poor floor! There are so many holes in my bed that devils are shooting stink bugs at me from eighteen miles below.

When my friends come into my room, they get stuck in my ugly, claustrophobic closet. Even my sister got stuck on the ceiling and then fell into a black hole, once because there was so much dog slobber in my room. Those devils just laughed and laughed in the worst way possible way when that happened! Even I felt a little happy over that.

My room got so dirty, so disgusting, that I turned devil-like. My face turned dark red and my voice got very deep, and I laughed in the worst way.

Malachi Jensen

Dancing Jelly Sandwich

Do you want to learn how to make a jelly sandwich dance? If you want to, you are going to need a lot of materials. So, here’s the list to write down:

A dance floor, two pieces of bread, some jelly, a radio, the sandwich’s favorite song (anything with “sandwich” in it works) and record player, a video camera, some googly eyes with a black marker, and two paper cut-out arms. Also, book an empty room as big as a gymnasium.

First, glue the googly eyes on the front of the bread. Now, you have to draw any kind of smile. Install the dance floor in the empty room. Next, smear the jelly on the two pieces of bread and slap them together. Add the arms to the sandwich. Turn on the music to “Peanut Butter Jelly Rock” and watch the sandwich go! It may seem weird to see it rise up and dance on his hands for hours, but you’ll get used to it.

Ian Kelley

Timmy vs. Adam

I’m feeling a little “Timmy” today. Yup, let me tell you why. First of all, my boring real name is Adam. Anyway, Timmy means total awesomeness, but Adam means weird cat farts! Timmy tastes like rainbow jelly beans topped with awesome sauce. But Adam tastes like absolute seriousness. Timmy smells like a room full of peppermint candy. Adam smells like lazy gorillas.

I am feeling like Timmy, but Adam will have to do for the next thirteen years.

Adam Napolillo

The Gift

Everyone has a gift. Some people can understand animals, but not the way I do—because I really understand them. It all happened this year on March 23. It was a regular day, or so I thought! My mother, who named me Maria, passed away when I was five. She always talked about the animals she loved.

I had noticed she wore a blue and purple jewel around her neck whenever she talked with our dog Sidney. I never knew what that was about, but after she passed away, I saw the precious stone in her room. I took it for a good luck charm and went to the park with my dog. While sitting under a tree, admiring my jewelry, it started to glow. I gazed into it just as my dog walked up to me.

“Let’s go, boy,” I said to him.

“Yea, sure, cool. I am tired anyway,” he responded.

I looked so surprised when he talked, and so did my pet!

“How can you talk to me?”

He looked very puzzled. “I don’t know.”

I looked down at the necklace and realized the power it had, and what my mother had known. I knew then that this would be my future to talk with animals.

Bianka Perez

In My Room

In my room, there is a mess.
It is filled with toys and board games,
such as “Sorry” and “Don’t Break the Ice.”
With five million Nerf guns and one million LEGOs
and Xbox 360 video games, I can’t find anything!
I get trapped in my own closet—
my jackets grab me, pull me in, and hold me down.
Clothes everywhere—on my bed, floor, couch,
even on the ceiling fan.

My room is so dirty that it smells like overflowing trash.
My stuff gets sucked into a black hole
and I go with it into the dark abyss with flames.

JJ Sanchez

Aliens Are Coming

Oh, no! It’s actually happening—aliens from Jupiter are attacking this Friday! I need you to join my group of fantastic soldiers. Bring your lava guns, lasers, and evil unicorns that fly and use hard rock-solid Skittles. There is so much new stuff you can also use today, such as super-duper alien detectors. We are going to also need flying mattresses to sleep on way above the ground.

You can contact me any time at I will keep you posted on the approaching alien invasion. Stock up on all the things we will need: weapons, beds, food, animals, shelter at the IFLY Home, and a lot more. I know! I will also put up a big sign with my phone number: 123-456-7890.

Come on, people! These aliens are more dangerous than Godzilla. Plus, they do not have the most amazing fashion sense and are my least favorite color—greenish yellow. Let’s get them!

Matti Serhus

How to Train Ms. Gilman to Dance

Let’s say you are a nine- to ten-year-old, and you are in a school called Boone Elementary. You have a teacher named Ms. Gilman, and she needs help on the dance floor. You are the complete expert. So, what do you do?

I can take you through the steps.

First, you will need to buy her a sparkly tutu and leotard from Target. Next, find a very large room, such as the White House. Oh, you may lose all your money paying for that—sorry! Now, go buy yourself a fluffy, pink, jewel-studded tutu with any money you have left. Drive Ms. Gilman to your huge space and ask her to put on the tutu. No doubt, she will ask, “What do I do?”

“Let me show you how to lean and dab, lean and dab,” you explain.

Suddenly, she says, “Oh, it’s Sunday, and I have to go to school!”

You laugh, because there is no school on Sunday. “Man, you crack me up, Ms. Gilman. Now, let’s get back to that dance, shall we?”

Nomia Stilwell


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