Blogs by editor Randi Lynn Mrvos


 Kid’s Imagination Train 
                                                                March 2014   Volume 2  Issue 3


                                                  Come read, learn, and draw!

  Cover art by:  Copyright © 2014 Brooke Parr

       Kid's Imagination Train
March 2014  Volume 2  Issue 3
 ISSN 2333-987X

Editor-in-Chief:  Randi Lynn Mrvos
Book Reviewer:  Donna Smith
            Illustrator:  Brooke Parr
            Marketing 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, 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 2 Issue 3

          What's New This Month?

     Kite Rider
      by Guy Belleranti 

    Monumental Dream
    by Anne Renaud

5...Book Review 
 What We Found in the Sofa and How It Changed the World
     by Donna Smith 

          6...Lesson Plan 
           Earth Science: Landforms and Bodies of Water
               by Randi Lynn Mrvos 

          7...Lesson Plan Activity 
              This is My Country    
      by Randi Lynn Mrvos 


Kite Rider

 I was bored. I’d finished my chores, homework, and even two library books. I called my friend, D.J., but he couldn’t come over. I couldn’t ride my bike either ‘cause it had a flat tire. I stomped outside. The weather was great—70s and breezy. I love breezes. They cool you down, make neat sounds in the leaves, and are great for flying kites.   

By: Steven 

Flying kites! Yeah, that’s what I’ll do. I ran back in the house and dug my rocket kite out of my closet. This will be fun. In no time, the breeze whipped up and pulled my kite high into the sky. I gripped the string and it soared up pulling…pulling. Suddenly, I felt nothing under my feet but air. Yikes! My kite and I flew over the people down below.

We sailed higher, above trees, above buildings, even above downtown skyscrapers. I held on tightly. Soon, the city became a tiny toy town. The Earth was just a blue and white ball behind me. And I was outer space bound!

By: Taylor
            Mars came and went. The same with Jupiter, Saturn, and Uranus. I’d read about each in school. Now I was seeing them with my very own eyes. But how much farther would we travel? I was hungry and tired. 
"Turn around, Rocket!" I called.
My kite partially turned. Straight toward Neptune!
“No,” I cried. “Turn more.”

           Rocket tried, but Neptune’s gravitational pull was stronger. Would I ever see Mom, Dad and D.J. again? Tears stung my eyes and rolled down my cheeks. There was nothing I could do. Nothing at all.  I wiped away the tears and set my jaw. No, there was something I could do. I could be brave. I could not give up. 
By: Henry 


     “Try again, Rocket,” I yelled. “Turn.” 

By: Maya
        Then I saw a flash and felt a tug so sharp that I almost lost my hold on the kite string. We were being pulled back into space, away from Neptune. Rocket had hooked on to an asteroid!
        “Giddy-up, asteroid!” I shouted. “Giddy-up, Rocket!"
        Past Uranus we zoomed. Past Jupiter. I saw Saturn a second time and then Mars.
        “Yippee!” I shouted as we sped toward Earth. Then I sucked in my breath. Would we crash into it? I shut my eyes.  
        I kept them closed until I heard a voice call out. I blinked when I saw who it was. The Man in the Moon! 

By: Margot

By: Frances
       "Hope you had a great ride!" he called.

                       Suddenly, the asteroid zipped in another direction. We broke free and headed straight back to earth. Rocket and I landed safely in the soft sand of our neighborhood playground.  We were immediately surrounded by Mom, Dad and D. J. What a ride I had taken!  I brushed myself off and began to tell them of it—until a breeze whipped up again.  

By: Andrew
Written by: Guy Belleranti

Monumental Dream 

A nine-story high face is carved into a mountain in the Black Hills of South Dakota. The sculpture is the result of more than half a century of work. It honors the spirit and the nobility of a Native American called Crazy Horse. Crazy Horse was known as Tasunke Witko, a Lakota word for “a horse that can perform extraordinary feats.”

Crazy Horse 
Crazy Horse was hailed as the bravest of all Sioux warriors.  He was born a Lakota Sioux of the Oglala tribe in the mid-1800s.  He believed that nothing was more important than freedom. His people praised him for his fight to save the Lakota way of life as the white man invaded their lands and forced them to live on reservations. Crazy Horse distinguished himself for his courage at Little Bighorn, the greatest Sioux military victory.

The Black Hills  
It had long been rumored that the sacred Black Hills of the Sioux were rich with gold.  When prospectors confirmed the rumors in 1873, the United States government announced it wanted to buy the land from the Sioux. But the Sioux refused to give up their sacred Black Hills.  The Black Hills were regarded as home of the Great Spirit. The land was given to them in 1868 according to the Fort Laramie Treaty.

In the fall of 1875, the government issued an ultimatum to all Sioux. They would voluntarily proceed to the Great Sioux Reservation by January of 1876 or be forcibly removed.  Crazy Horse and his people stood their ground. Then on June 25, 1876, Lieutenant Colonel George Armstrong Custer and the Seventh Cavalry Regiment moved along the Bighorn River to Crazy Horse’s encampment.  They prepared to attack.  After the battle however, Custer and all of his men lay dead. 

The Sioux victory was short-lived. From then on, soldiers far outnumbered the Indians in every battle they fought.  And in 1877, Crazy Horse was captured.  He died of a mortal bayonet wound at Fort Robinson.  

The Making of a Monument 
At the invitation of Chief Henry Standing Bear, sculptor Korczak Ziolkowski visited the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota in 1940. After learning about Crazy Horse and his people, he agreed to build the memorial. Work on the Crazy Horse Memorial began in 1948. Ziolkowski spent almost half of his life on the mountain.  He had blasted off several million tons of granite. After his death in 1982, his wife and family continued the sculptor’s work on the educational and cultural project. Sixteen years later, the 88-foot high face of Crazy Horse was completed.  

In the future, the mountain sculpture-in-the-round will dominate the landscape. Work is currently underway on the horse’s head.  A hogan-style Indian Museum of North America will be built across a reflecting pool from the mountain. A poem penned by Ziolkowski will be carved on the mountain face in letters that will stand three-feet tall. The Crazy Horse Memorial will measure 641 feet long and stand 563 feet high. When it is completed, it will become the world’s largest sculpture. 

Written by: Anne Renaud                                                                                                     4                                                                                                                                                                                                               
Book Review:
What We Found in the Sofa and How It Saved the World

Name of Book:  What We Found In the Sofa and How It Saved the World
            Author:  Henry Clark
            Year Published: 2013 
            Age Range of Book: 9 - 12 years 
            Publisher:  Little, Brown and Company 
            ISBN:  978-0-316-20666-2  
            Price: $13.56                   

           The only hope for saving the world is a sofa, three middle school kids, and a rare zucchini-colored crayon.

            The town of Cheshire isn’t an idyllic place to call home. Fiona, River, and Freak are kids who live on the edge of town that borders an area deemed Hellsboro because of an underground coal fire that has been burning for twelve years. The abandoned Rodmore Chemical plant sits at the center of Hellsboro.

            After Fiona, River, and Freak find a sofa near their bus stop, they become involved in a mission to stop the evil Edward M. Disin from taking over the world. As the three face indecision about who to trust, they learn to rely on each other to stop Disin while discovering the truth behind the their own personal tragedies.

Henry Clark’s novel is filled with action and mystery along with threads of science fiction sewn into the story. Clark really makes the reader believe that someday your sofa could become more than a just a stuffed piece of furniture. The story entertains the reader with a spooky encounter, a life-altering twist, and a villain who would be comfortable in the company of Count Olaf and Voldemor.          

Clark is a self-proclaimed couch potato, which may be why a sofa is an integral part of his story. He’s written articles for MAD magazine and he’s had stories appear in Isaac Asimov’s Science Fiction Magazine. In addition, he’s the head phrenologist at the living history museum, Old Bethpage Village Restoration, in New York. 

Rating for the book: ***** 
Visit Donna Smith’s website: 


Lesson Plan: Landforms and Bodies of Water

Landforms are the natural features of a landscape.  They are defined by their surface form and location in the landscape.  Landforms have different shapes and sizes.  Some landforms are tall, like mountains.  Others are smaller, such as hills.  Landforms can form chains or circles in water, or be surrounded entirely by water.  

Bodies of water can take on many sizes and shapes, too.  Some bodies of water can be partly enclosed by land, like gulfs.  They can also be shaped like a horseshoe, such as coves.  Oceans are the largest bodies of water, covering more than two-thirds of the Earth’s surface. 
Landform Definitions 
Alluvial fan – a fan shaped deposit of earth material caused by the flowing of a stream
                       from a steep slope onto flatter land
Barrier Sand Bar – a long, narrow strip of sand that results as waves deposit particles
Basin – an area of land which is largely enclosed by higher land
Butte – a flat-topped rock or hill with steep sides
Canyon – a deep valley with very steep sides, often carved by a river
Cape – a pointed piece of land that sticks out in sea, ocean, lake or river
Delta – the land built up by the deposits of silt and sand at the mouth of some rivers
Divide – the highest ridge of land that separates river basins
Glacier – a large body of slow moving ice
Hill – a raised portion of earth with sloping sides
Island – a piece of land surrounded by water
Isthmus – the narrow strip of land connecting two land masses
Mesa – a land formation which has a relatively flat top and steep rock walls
Mountain – very tall places, higher than hills
Peninsula – a body of land that is surrounded by water on 3 sides
Plain – low areas of the earth which have been eroded nearly level
Plateau – high, nearly level uplifted areas made of horizontal layers of rocks
Valley – low area of land between mountains or hills
Volcano – a cone-shaped mountain formed out of rock, usually with an opening or a
                 depression at the top

 Bodies of Water Definitions 
Gulf – part of the sea or ocean that is partly surrounded by land; usually larger than a bay
Harbor – a sheltered area of water where ships may anchor safely
Lake – a large body of water surrounded by land on all sides
Ocean – the largest body of salt water 
River – a flowing body of water that usually empties into sea or ocean
River Mouth – the place where a river empties into a larger body of water
River Source – the place where a river or stream begins
Sound – a large ocean inlet or deep bay
Strait – a narrow body of water that connects two larger bodies of water
Tributary – a stream that flows to a larger stream or body of water
Waterfall – a place where running water makes a steep drop, usually over a cliff 

Written by: Randi Lynn Mrvos                                                                                             6

             Lesson Plan Activity:  This is My Country               

       Materials: Landform and bodies of water chart, cardboard, spoon, paint, paint brush, marker, hair dryer

   Salt Map:  ¼ cup of salt, ¼ cup of flour, water to make paste


1.  Make copies of the Landform Definitions and the Bodies of Water Definitions on the 
     the previous page. Cut out each definition.   
2.  Turn them upside down.  Have your child choose at least six. 
3.  Use these landforms to design a country. 
4.  On a piece of cardboard, draw an imaginary country to include the landforms. 
5.  Mix up the ingredients for a salt map. 
6.  Use a spoon or paintbrush to apply salt-flour mixture onto the cardboard. 
7.  Let it dry overnight or speed up the dying with a hair dryer. 
8.  Paint the salt map with acrylic or tempera paints. 
9.  Label the landmarks with a marker and give the country a name.  

Written by: Randi Lynn Mrvos                                                                                            7                                             

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