The Lost Words: Acorn

The Lost Words

Was given to us last Christmas

By David’s Mum

We have looked at it from time to time

But it is only since following the author and illustrator

On Twitter

That I have been truly engaged with the power of this book

This book of words

This book of pictures

This book of nature

The Lost Words brings together

20 species

Plants and animals

To share with people

Young and old

This is a book of wisdom


This is a book of magic


It has definitely inspired me

And through me

My children

And soon other children

Through our home education group

Today at the breakfast table

I worked with Esther, William and Bea

Aged 8, 8 and 4

To read a spell from this book of spells

To talk about the content and structure of the poem

And to use the spell as a model

To write a poem of our own

To help us we used The Lost Words Explorers’ Guide

Written by Eva John

Shared by The John Muir Trust


We began our breakfast by reading Acorn

I read the poem out loud


We picked out all the nouns

And talked about the connections

We then made a thought cloud

Coming up with our own pairs of nouns

Following the pattern of the poem

As …. is to …., as …. is to …..

the lost words

The children came up with lots of lovely ideas

And some obscure and crazy ones

We collected them all together

And selected our favourites

The best

We tried to find 16 pairs

Like the original poem

But ended up with far more

Together we toyed with our word choices

And formed our own spell

A Matilda Mae spell

(of course)


lost words poetry

Stardust by Esther, William and Bea

For Matilda Mae

Inspired by Robert MacFarlane and Jackie Morris

The Lost Words

As seed is to flower, as flour is to bread
As brick is to house, as tail is to mouse
As stone is to castle, as bone is to skeleton
As wind is to hurricane, as singe is to burn
As spark is to fire, as heart is to body
As drop is to ocean, as plant is to potion
As leaf is to tree, as soul is to me
As pebble is to shore, as tile is to floor
As blade is to lawn, as spot is to fawn
As ripple is to lake, as sugar is to cake
As sand is to dune, as note is to tune
As wheel is to bus so stardust is to us

We are planning to do this activity again with friends on Tuesday

As part of our home ed group Autumn Poetry Play Day

We are planning to make a Poetree!

We will let you know how we get on

In the meantime if you do not already own this enchanting book

The Lost Words

Then do find a copy

And also download The Lost Words Explorers’ Guide

And for a daily dose of inspiration

Be sure to follow Robert Macfarlane on Twitter

We love his Word of the Day

I am certain that you will too x



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