Blogs by editor Randi Lynn Mrvos


                                                          December 2013   Volume 1  Issue 12

Come read, learn, and draw!

  Cover art by:  Copyright © 2013 Brooke Parr

Kid's Imagination Train
December 2013  Volume 1  Issue 12 
          ISSN 2333-987X

Editor-in-Chief:  Randi Lynn Mrvos
Book Reviewer:  Donna Smith
Illustrator:  Brooke Parr
Marketing Director/Art Director:  Rosemarie Gillen

Editorial Offices: 
All across the United States

            Publishing Office: 
            4637 Spring Creek Drive
            Lexington, KY 40515

 Mission Statement:
Welcome to the Kid's Imagination Train, where children can take the journey of reading in a brand new way. KIT offers book reviews, fiction, poetry, lesson plans, and  nonfiction for kids ages 5 - 12. It’s unique in that it engages children by providing the opportunity to illustrate their favorite features and have them published online. 
We invite you to read, to learn, and to draw!  

©Kid's Imagination Train

Volume 1 Issue 12


    I Forgot My Lunch 
       by Edie Stoltz  Zolkower

    Still Standing Tall 
       by Geary Smith

5...Book Review 
    The Gingerbread Pirate
       by Donna Smith 

6...Lesson Plan 
                  by Randi Lynn Mrvos

7...Lesson Plan Activity
     A Shape Poems 
       by Randi Lynn Mrvos 

                                              I Forgot My Lunch 

By: Abby

Racing out the front door, I headed off to school,
chasing papers everywhere and trying to look cool.
I was thinking of my math test whose numbers I would crunch,
when I was stricken with the thought that I FORGOT MY LUNCH!

With little time to get it, ‘cause that would make me late,
I thought of skipping lunch today and trying to lose weight.
I wished I’d had more breakfast, ‘cause now I felt so crummy.  
My stomach growled as if to say, “PLEASE FILL THIS EMPTY TUMMY!”

I checked my pockets front and back for any bit of money,
so I could buy a hot school lunch of something bland and runny.
But when I searched my pockets, I only found some lint.
Maybe I could fool my mouth and make it taste like mint?

I thought my woes were over when my teacher Mr. Harty
told the class we’d worked so hard he’d throw a pizza party.
My gut was loud and piercing. It would rumble, groan and squeak.
But over the noise I heard him say he’d schedule it next week!

Sitting in the lunchroom, my friends observed my plight.
They shared with me their lunches, much to my delight.
Ham and cheese, grapes and plums, washed down with fruity punch.
With such good friends to dine with, I’m glad I forgot my lunch! 

Written by:  Edie Stoltz Zolkower                                                                                                     4


                Still Standing Tall: The Life of Sam Houston 

Sam Houston stood tall on a homemade diving board that overlooked a stream in Baker Creek, Tennessee. His older brother tested his bravery.  He dared Sam to jump.  Even as a little boy, Sam's courage was tested. Sam looked down, took a deep breath, and plunged into the creek.  Sam loved playing outside.  Indeed, he would rather be outside than working in the family store as he was expected to do.  

One day, Sam did not go to work at all.  His older brothers discovered Sam talking with his neighbors, the Cherokee Indians.  Sam's family reprimanded him, but that did not stop Sam.  He continued to read and to learn more about the Cherokee Indians.  In fact, he spent so much time with them that he was adopted into the tribe and given the name, "Raven." 

As a young man, Sam enlisted in the army. He stood tall at 6 foot 2 inches and had a deep commanding voice.  He served under General Andrew Jackson and fought against the British during the War of 1812. 

Later in life, he moved to Oklahoma to live with the Cherokee Indians.  He became a trader and an adviser. On many occasions, he served as a guide for the tribe in the new territories.  It was during this time that he visited Texas, which was then under Mexican rule.  

In 1832, Sam Houston moved to Texas. Three years later, he was named commander general of the revolution army.  He courageously led the Texas army to a brilliant victory over Mexican dictator Santa Anna at the Battle of San Jacinto in 1836.  In the years that followed, he became a United States senator. In 1859, Sam was elected Governor of Texas. 

Sam Houston retired in Huntsville, Texas because he built his first house in Huntsville and he loved the town. On July 26,1863 he died at the age of 70.  To honor this great man, artist David Adickes designed and constructed the Sam Houston statue.  A Tribute to Courage was dedicated to the city of Huntsville on October 22, 1994.  Located on Interstate 45 between Dallas and Houston, the statue stands at 67 feet in height on a 10-foot sunset granite base.  It is the world's tallest statue of an American hero, honoring a man who once stood tall.  

Written by: Geary Smith

The author wishes to thank Mr. Michael Sproat, Curator of Collections, Sam Houston Memorial Museum, for his expertise.                                                                               


Book Review: The Gingerbread Pirates 

Name of Book: The Gingerbread Pirates
Illustrator: Matt Tavares
            Year Published: 2009
            Age Range of Book: 4 – 8 years
            Publisher: Candlewick Press
            ISBN: 978-0-7636-3223-6
            Price: $7.08

Ahoy! Get ready for a swashbusckling adventure with a cameo appearance by the jolly Christmas delivery guy. In Kristin Kladstrup's book The Gingerbread Pirates, the cookies that Jim and his mother make come to life.  

Three pirates—Captain Cookie, Wavy, and Dots work together on Christmas Eve to free their fellow crewmates trapped in a cookie jar jail. Captain Cookie with his toothpick peg leg and cookie cutlass bravely escapes a ravenous mouse, traverses cliffs, and faces a notorious cannibal. And a boy wishes for a pirate ship and waits to hear “reindeer hooves on the roof.” 

Christmas is magic time and Kladstrup’s picture book tap-steps and step-taps the reader through a new holiday favorite. The detailed pictures of Santa Claus, gingerbread pirates, the star-lit tree, stockings hung on the mantel, and other Christmas decorations along with the roving mouse and sleeping cat beautifully depict the story. 

On the back flap of the book jacket, Kladstrup writes about how she came up with the idea for her story.   Her inspiration came from a Christmas when she baked pirate gingerbread cookies with her son. Kladstrup is also the author of the middle grade novel, The Book of Story Beginnings.  

Matt Tavares has illustrated Lady Liberty: A Biography, as well as retellings of Iron Hans: A Grimms’ Fairy Tale, Jack and the Beanstalk, and ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas.  In addition, he has written and illustrated three books about baseball:  Mudball, Oliver’s Gameand Zachery’s Ball.

Rating for the book: ***** 

Visit Donna Smith’s website:  



Lesson Plan:  Shape Poems

Shape poems are sometimes known as concrete or picture poems.  They typically blend art with poetry.  These poems are fun to look at and to read.  

Some shape poems make simple pictures by adjusting the length of lines.  For instance, a shape poem about a snake might by created by stringing words of the poem in a curvy fashion, so that the written words take on the shape of a snake.  Or a shape poem about a tulip might be written in the shape of a flower.  A shape poem can be written as a geometric shape like a circle or a triangle.  In shape poems, words are freely arranged in any direction in order to illustrate the subject of the poem. 

Suggested reading:

Poem-making:  Ways to Begin Writing Poetry by Myra Livingston

Knock at a Star:  A Child’s Introduction to Poetry by X.J. Kennedy and Dorothy Kennedy

Written by: Randi Lynn Mrvos


Shape Poem Ornaments

 Integrate geometry into this poetry activity. 


Blue and white construction paper, ruler, scissors, pencil, fine-tipped black marker or pen, yarn, glitter, stickers, beads, scrap paper


1.  Cut out 5" x 5" squares from the blue-colored construction paper.  
2.  From the white construction paper, cut out a circle, a square, a rectangle, 
     and a triangle, about ½" smaller than the 5” x 5” squares. 
3.  Use these geometric shapes as patterns. 
4.  Trace around the edges of the white shapes with a pencil onto the squares of 5" x 5" 
      blue squares.  
5.  Write a poem about the geometric shapes along the outline of the shapes. 
6.  Punch a hole at the top of each poem.
7.  String a piece of yarn through the hole and tie it into loop. 
8.  Decorate the inside of the poems with glitter, stickers, or beads. 
9.  Hang the shape poems on doorknobs and from windows.  

Written by: Randi Lynn Mrvos



Thank you for reading 
Kid's Imagination Train


Join us next month for an exciting new issue of 
Kid's Imagination Train





Blog Archive


For general inquiries:

Rights and Disclaimers

Rights: The Kid's Imagination Train offers exposure to a worldwide audience. We only ask for electronic rights to the story or article. All other rights remain with the author. After 120 days, the electronic rights revert back to the author.

Disclaimer: The Kid's Imagination Train does not warrant the accuracy, integrity, or completeness of the content provided on the Kid's Imagination Train blog.

Under no circumstances shall the Kid's Imagination Train blog be liable for any direct, indirect, incidental, special or consequential damages that result from your use of or inability to use the Kid's Imagination Train blog, including but not limited to reliance by you on any information obtained from the Kid's Imagination Train that results in mistakes, omissions, interruptions, deletion or corruption of files, viruses, delays in operation or transmission, or any failure of performance.

None of the contributors, sponsors, administrators or anyone else connected with the Kid's Imagination Train blog in any way whatsoever can be held responsible for the appearance of any inaccurate or libelous information or for your use of the information contained in or linked from these web pages.

Logo and Graphics Generator