The final poem of the collection, “Winter Leaf” represents a final changing of the seasons for the year, marking the turn back to winter at the end of the book, contrasting “The First Robin of Spring.” The poem is about one lonely leaf in winter being tossed about by the wind against a lonely winter background.
This short poem lends itself to a great discussion of some of the melancholy that goes along with winter. Teachers and parents can ask children how they feel when winter begins and then how they feel after it’s been a long winter.
- Have children draw a picture of winter and have them share what winter feels like to them.
- Teach students how to cut snowflakes out of paper. Then, have them cut out some leaves from brown construction paper. Create a collage on a wall or bulletin board that recreates the winter scene from the poem. Parents and teachers can find directions for creating snowflakes out of paper at this site.
As a class or a group, research how winter varies in different parts of the country and the world. For example, teachers and parents might share with students how winters are like in Maine, where the author of the poem lives, and then take the opportunity to compare what winters are like in the students’ part of the country.