When I Was Young In The Country

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I picture book I wrote based off of Cynthia Rylant\'s "When I Was Young in the Mountains". This is an activity that can be done at all grade levels both individually and as a class project. Technology and New Literacies may or may not be integrated depending of how the lesson plan dictates.

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When I Was Young In The Country

  1. 1. Dedicated to my mom and dad who had the wisdom to gift me a childhood in the country.
  2. 2. When I was young in the countryMom would teach us how toplant the different types ofseeds in the garden. Someseeds were scattered, someseeds were placed carefullyone by one.
  3. 3. I sometimes used my smallhands to cover the seeds withsoil. Or, sometimes, Mom usedthe hoe to pull the dirt overthe carefully planted seeds.
  4. 4. When I was young in the country, Aunts and Uncles would spendSunday dinner around a table spread with Mom’s homemadechicken pot pie, Mississippi spinach, buttermilk fried chicken,and green beans fresh picked from the garden.
  5. 5. Afterwards, we would play a game of Michigan Rummy whilethe grown-ups enjoyed lemon meringue pie and drank coffee.We kids ate a bowl of ice cream.
  6. 6. When I was young in the country,Mom and Dad would take usmushroom hunting in the nearbywoods. We would search forhours. Dad would teach usabout the different types oftrees in the woods. He likedthe Redbud best. One time, hedug a small one up and we tookit home and planted it in ouryard.
  7. 7. When we got home from mushroom hunting, Mom would fry upwhatever mushrooms we found in butter. Dad and Mom wouldoffer us some and we would decline. Mom and Dad savored everybite, though.
  8. 8. When I was young in thecountry, we spent the summersharvesting vegetables from thegarden. I would spend eveningswith Mom picking peas andgreen beans or pluckingpotatoes from their roots asmom dug the hills.
  9. 9. Some of my summer days were spent podding peas or stringinggreen beans. When Mom got home from work, she taught mehow to can them. We canned French style and cut greenbeans, peas, and corn. Mom taught me how to use hot water totake the skin off tomatoes before canning them or makingtomato juice. We also canned my favorite—bread and butterpickles.
  10. 10. When I was young in the country, snow would come each winterand cover the long gravel lane. The wind would howl and blowsnow across the fields leaving huge snow drifts blocking ourpath. At times our cars could not get through the deep snow.
  11. 11. One time, a man in a backhoehad to come and dig us out. Itwas nice to have country folkwho could help when weneeded it.
  12. 12. When I was young in the country,I laid in my bed at night andlistened to the crickets chirpand awoke to the sounds ofgrasshoppers buzzing.
  13. 13. Sometimes, the crickets would get inside my room and I wouldchase them around until I captured them in a jar. I would takethem outside and put them in the garden so they could sing theirchirpety-chirp to me when I went to sleep that night.
  14. 14. When I was young in thecountry, I sat on the porchswing swaying back andforth, back and forth.Sometimes I memorized therainbow or colors in theflower bed that surroundedme.
  15. 15. Maybe, I picked a daisy and played “he loves me, he loves menot” or maybe I picked a dandelion that had gone into seedand made wishes for a friend to come to the country andplay with me.
  16. 16. Sometimes, I sat on the swingand watched a storm blow inlate in the evenings. Othertimes, I sat and stared off intothe colorful sunsets until thestars began to twinkle in thenight sky.
  17. 17. When I was young in thecountry, I always enjoyed theopen spaces, the peacefulsolitude and the rainbow ofnature’s bounty.
  18. 18. When I was young in the country, I never thought about the pot ofgold at the end of the rainbow because the rainbow of thecountry was enough for me.
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