Kate Cat Caught a Moose

I wrote this 193-word poem for my summer ESL class on phonics and accent reduction. It includes about a large number of minimal pair vocabulary words highlighting continuants and stops (esp. /s/ and /t/ endings), as well as various vowel sounds. It corresponds with Unit 10 of Judy Gilbert’s Clear Speech, 4th Edition. Enjoy, and feel free to share and reuse with attribution.


Kate Cat Caught a Moose

Kate the cat caught a moose;
She meant to catch a mouse.
She had it pinned with the pad of her paw
At night in the nice mouse house.

She never thought she might meet a moose instead
When she pawed in the hole meant for mice.
Most cats are meant to stalk rodents and rats,
Not to pat on the nose of a moose eating rice!

(Yes, the big moose ate rice;
You heard me right.
Rice is a nice thing
For mooses to bite!
It was bought from a bat
Bit by billions of lice;
Rice and lice look the same
When you turn out the lights!)

On the day of the race, Kate cat paid for two tickets:
She would go there by boat but come back by bus.
But really, she ought to have bought a bus pass
And pawned the boat ticket; boats just aren’t worth the fuss!

Besides, the base bus rates are nothing to balk at,
And the pace of a bus is a pretty good rate.
Talk to Martin the moose; he’ll tell you, “Take buses
If to talk face-to-face with a moose is your fate!”


Bookstore Present/Baseball Tryout

I wrote this 298-word poem for my summer ESL class on phonics and accent reduction. It includes about a dozen pairs of vocab words highlighting syllable stress of two-syllable verbs versus nouns, as well as compound nouns. It corresponds with Units 3–5 (particularly Unit 5) of Judy Gilbert’s Clear Speech, 4th Edition. Enjoy, and feel free to share and reuse with attribution.


Bookstore Present/Baseball Tryout

I present to you this present:
It’s an object from a bookstore.
Don’t object! And don’t reject it!
Before you do, why don’t you look more?

You should check out this cool bookmark
And the notebook that I bought you.
Oh, while I was at the checkout,
There’s a keychain that I got, too.

Even though I know books are a turnoff for you,
I’d like you to try out the book that I bought.
A notebook is special: it’s a record for you
To record, every day, all the thoughts that you thought.

So turn off your tablet and pack up your keyboard;
Let’s set up this notebook together.
The setup is easy; so soon, we’ll progress
To record all your progress forever.

Oh! I also got tickets for the baseball team’s tryout;
Let’s go eat a hot dog while watching them play.
Oh my gosh! Did you notice the man in the raincoat?
I remember his face from the news yesterday!

I suspect he’s the suspect from yesterday’s holdup,
So look out for him if you can.
The police have a lookout! Look close, can you see her?
She’s trying to start up that unmarked, white van!

It’s a transport they brought for transporting the convict.
(I mean that I’m sure they’ll convict him
When they see him in court, and they hold up the picture,
The one that was drawn by the victim.

But what if his story conflicts with the one
That the witnesses told their attorneys?
With that kind of conflict, the judge could reject it,
And rejects make excellent turnkeys.

Whatever that means!) So please, hold up your camera;
We’ll capture a picture and email the cop.
Oh, what an exciting event this has been
For you to record in the notebook I bought!