White Cane Day POEM Plan

The best $34.42 I ever spent: My white cane" by Qudsiya Naqui.

Part 1: Qudsiya's Story

As a class, read "The best 34.32 I ever spent: My white cane" by Qudsiya Naqui and pause to answer the comprehension and discussion questions. These are inserted as comments throughout the article, and can also be found below.

Comprehension Questions

  1. Qudsiya feels powerful and present with her cane. Why do you think a white cane can make her feel this way?
  2. When Qudsiya started cane instruction for the first time, she felt very uncertain about herself. What would you tell Qudsiya or somebody who is just starting to use their cane to make them feel excited about the White Cane?
  3. If you met Qudsiya in school and saw that she felt ashamed of her white cane, what would you tell her? What might you tell the people who she felt bullied by?
  4. Qudsiya gradually lost more vision and at first, she wanted to hide it. This made her more isolated and it was unsafe. Not only did she stop going out to parties or walking around at night, she also had a huge fall down the stairs! If she used her cane, what kinds of things would be easier for her?
  5. What kinds of information can a cane give you that walking with human guide or dog guide might not?
  6. What kind of tip do you have on your white cane?
  7. Qudsiya made friends with other people who were blind and cane users. What were some of the ways this changed her mind about being blind?

Part 2: Expressing ourselves through writing.


Writing is a great way to express how we feel. Through Qudsiya's story, we learned how Qudsiya's experiences with the white cane shaped her emotions and attitude toward using the white cane. Once apprehensive and dismissive of its use, she became a proud cane user over time.

A Poem can also be a great way to express how we feel. Poems come in all shapes and sizes, but what is true of all poems is that they usually evoke our feelings or our senses.

Writing a Poem

  1. Think about Qudsiyas white cane, how did it make her feel to purchase her very own cane? (Example answers Proud, Happy, Independent, Accomplished)
    1. Write a sentence about how your cane makes you feel
  2. Poems also evoke our senses like touch, taste, smell, hearing, and vision. Can you finish these sensory sentences?
    1. My cane looks like
    2. My cane sounds like
    3. My cane feels like
  3. Sometimes, people use personification to talk about objects in a poem. Personification is when you give a non-human object some human characteristics. For example, I might make my Guide dog speak English in my poem. We know dogs don't speak English - humans do! But saying a dog can speak English is an example of personification. Another example is when people say something like "the bag of chips just stood up and walked out, I cant find them anywhere!" We know chips and bags don't walk - but we give them these human-like characteristics.
    1. Write a sentence where you personify your cane
  4. A Simile is when we compare two objects by saying one is "like" something else. For example "A blueberry is like a yummy ball of fruit" or "a leaf is like a trees fur". Write a simile about your cane!
    1. My cane is like
  5. Now, put it all together! Lets see if you've got a poem
    1. My cane makes me feel
    2. My cane looks like
    3. My cane sounds like
    4. My cane feels like
    5. My cane (personification)
    6. My cane (simile)

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