"Don't Pinch!" Poetry Theater
A poem in three voices
“Don’t Pinch

Adapted from the poem by Bruce Lansky in My Dog Ate My Homework! published by Meadowbrook Press.


Summary: A child discovers why his friends are pinching him.


Presentation Suggestions: Have the students read or perform the poem in front of the class. Have the students act out the different lines while they read them.


Props: A row of student chairs representing the seats on a bus. Any other props are optional.


Delivery: The lines of the poem need to be read with poetic rhythm. For more information on poetic rhythm and how to perform poetry in classroom, please read the Performing Poetry section under the Teacher’s Resources.




Kid 1

Kid 2



Don’t Pinch!




When I got on the school bus,

I was in for a surprise.

My friends all stared and pointed.

There was mischief in their eyes.


A kid who sat in front of me

reached out and pinched my knee.


Kid 1:


(Pinches Narrator’s knee)




My friends all started laughing,

but the joke was lost on me.


And then I got a second pinch.


Kid 2:


(Pinches Narrator’s ear)




I felt it on my ear.

And then I felt a third and fourth.


Kid 1 and Kid 2:


(Pretend to pinch Narrator on his rear)




You guessed it—on my rear.


I asked, “Why are you pinching me?

I think it’s very mean!”

They said,


Kid 1 and Kid 2 (in unison):


“Today’s St. Patrick’s Day

and you’re not wearing green.”


© 2003 by Bruce Lansky. Adapted from the poem in My Dog Ate My Homework! published by Meadowbrook Press. This classroom theater play version of “Don’t Pinch!” is © 2008 by Meadowbrook Press.

Permission is given for individual school classes to perform this play and to make as many copies of the play as are needed for the students’ use. All other reproduction and performance is prohibited under penalty of law. For use of this play outside individual classes, please contact info@meadowbrookpress.com for permission.

Click on the book below for more information about

“My Dog Ate My Homework!”