Mentor Text Linky - Smart {Where the Sidewalk Ends}

Collaboration Cuties is hosting their weekly mentor text link today.  The theme is math.  If you go to their website, and click the "Must Read Mentor Texts" button at the top, you can find all the texts that were linked up previously.  You know, in case you need a shopping list!

I am linking up with the poem "Smart" by Shel Silverstein.  It can be found inside his "Where the Sidewalk Ends" book.  It is a really funny poem about a boy who is given a dollar by his dad.  He then takes the dollar and trades it for coins.  Each trade increases the number of coins he has, but decreases the value of money in his hand (which he does not realize).  By the end of the poem, he is really proud of himself for having turned his one dollar into five pennies.

I found a great PDF of the poem on a museum's website (The Franklin Institute).  Just click on the image to download a copy to use in your classroom if you don't have the book.

I have used this poem with first and second graders.  You can really see right away who understands money and who doesn't, as some of them get that the boy did something ridiculous and some don't until you work through it.  A great activity is to have the students draw the coins (or use play money) that he has in each stanza and count up the money.  This way they can visually see the problem.

Head over to Collaboration Cuties to link up with your math text.

Also, make sure to enter Fourth Grade Flipper's 500 follower giveaway, which ends tonight at midnight!

And of course Happy Mother's Day to all the moms out there!


  1. I love this poem. I am reviewing poetry and money this week so this post is a huge help to me!! Thanks for sharing.

    Looking From Third to Fourth

  2. What a great idea! I love Shel Silverstein but have never connected him to math! Brandee @ Creating Lifelong Learners

  3. What a great idea! I love Shel Silverstein but have never connected him to math! Brandee @ Creating Lifelong Learners

  4. Great idea! I have all his books, forgot about this poem!
    Head Over Heels For Teaching

  5. Thank so much for sharing this! Love Shel! I will put this on my list of "must uses" for next year...

    Have a great week,
    Sarah @ Hoots N Hollers

  6. Great poem! There is so much you can do with this poem and all of his others, too! Thanks for sharing!


  7. This is such a great poem. I've used it a few years with my kids who needed a little extra help with money.

    Hunter's Tales from Teaching

  8. I love this! There are so many great ideas that I have forgotten about! I'm so glad that you linked it up AND shared all of those resources! What a fun way to incorporate poetry and counting coins! Love it!

    Collaboration Cuties


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