The Wartville Wizard- Poppins Book Nook

It’s time for the Poppins Book Nook project hosted by Enchanted Homeschooling Mom.  I’m happy to be participating again this month.   This month the topic is wizards.  I instantly thought of one of my favorite books- The Wartville Wizard by Don Madden.

writing center

The Wartville Wizard is a story of an old man who gets fed up with all the litterbugs in his town.  He creates a spell that sends back each piece of trash to the person who “dropped” it.  The townspeople begin walking around with trash stuck to them and learn an important lesson about littering.  Everytime I read the story I think about my mom who used to pick up litter and hand it back to the person who littered saying, “I think you dropped something.”  This book is perfect for anytime of the year, but especially relevant to Earth Day this past week.

Ready to see the creative and resourceful project I came up with to follow-up with the story?

Literacy Activity- Recycled Materials Writing Station

We throw away so many things and fortunately now recycle more and more too.  I came up with a recycling idea that will help you create a writing station or supply an existing writing center.

writing center

Everything pictured is recycled!  Here’s a detailed rundown of what I used to create our writing station.

1.  Thanks to my good friend, Rachelle, I was able to get this table and chair from a school that was closing down.  Repurpose a table already in your house or check yard sales or thrift shops.

2.  The writing utensil cup is a sippy cup that was missing its top.  An old coffee mug or an empty frosting container would work well too.

3.  The cup is filled with pencils made from recycled materials.  The markers had dried out.  Instead of throwing them away, I let the tips soak in some liquid watercolors that I had in our art studio.  Presto, new markers!

4.  This crayon was created from a handful of broken crayons that would have otherwise been thrown away.  I created an aluminum foil mold, filled with broken crayons and placed in a 225 degree oven for about 1o minutes.

Every writing station needs a variety of writing papers!

5.  Brown paper grocery bags cut into a variety of sizes yields lots of sheets.  I was able to get six 7×9 pieces from one bag!

6.  Used giftwrap or gift bags also make great borders for paper.

7.  Don’t throw away birthday cards, holiday cards, etc.  Cut the front cover of the card off and you can now write on the back which is usually blank.

8.  The stacking tray was created with empty cereal boxes.  I stacked them together and adhered with lots of packing tape.

Time to write!  How about creating a poster about littering to hang?  Maybe a letter to an author of an earth friendly book?  What else could you create from your recycled writing station?

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Check out some of the other great links below for more books on wizards!  And, if you have a post on this topic, please add it!

About Jodie Rodriguez

Jodie Rodriguez is a mom of two young boys and an early childhood/elementary educator with over 18 years of experience. Jodie's passion is helping parents, teachers, librarians and anyone else interested in nurturing our youngest readers.


  1. I love the ideas! That’s a book we’ve never read, so I’ll have to check it out of the library soon! Thanks for the ideas!

  2. Sounds like a good book; we will have to look for it! Art with recyclables is always fun!

  3. That book sounds great! Too bad it isn’t true 🙂

    I love how you created an entire work station with recycled materials too!

  4. This is wonderful! I love the Poppins Book Nook!!!

  5. What a great story and the lesson that goes along with it. I cant wait to find this one at the library. Thanks for sharing

  6. I have now put this storybook on our list to borrow from the library! Love your writing station!


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