This book of poems is recommended for students in grades 5-8. This book is a collection of poems for multiple readers to be used for read louds, as foThis book of poems is recommended for students in grades 5-8. This book is a collection of poems for multiple readers to be used for read louds, as four voices intertwine to narrate three different poems and scenarios. Each reader follows color coded lines as they read about ghosts, gossip, and grandma rockin’. Each scenario also gets progressively harder and each poem is rich in rhythm, sense, and sound.
Reading through these scenarios requires a little practice, but is sure to bring laughter, interest, and enjoyment. As readers get used to the format of the book, they will be eager to continue reading as each poem increases in difficulty. Instructions for group reading are helpful and introduce the poems. Spacing and color-coded line bars also help to ease confusion as to how the poems are supposed to be read. The illustrations are also unique and are computer-generated folk-like paintings in warm tones that support the text. There are some full-page illustrations but most of the art is present below the poems. This book can be used in the classroom for choral reading, readers’ theatre, discussion, and writing. Students will greatly enjoy reading this book of poems as the topics are humorous and the language used make reading fun because rhythmic and repetitive sounds are used. ...more
The Neighborhood Mother Goose is intended for students in grades K-2 and has won the ALA Notable Children's Books Younger Readers Award. In this book,The Neighborhood Mother Goose is intended for students in grades K-2 and has won the ALA Notable Children's Books Younger Readers Award. In this book, 41 nursery and street rhymes both familiar and not well known are illustrated with photographs in a city setting.
This book is a modern Mother Goose as computer generated and manipulated color photographs accompany Mother Goose rhymes. The author uses computer tools to combine photos of children in the Brooklyn neighborhood who act out the Mother Goose Rhymes. The scenarios she creates are both realistic and wild. For example, accompanying the familiar rhyme “There was an Old Lady Who Lived in a Shoe” is a double-page spread of tiny children jumping in a giant shoe. Even though reality has never been a part of Mother Goose rhymes, children will enjoy seeing individuals like themselves in pictures that make the familiar rhymes part of imaginative fun in the city. Even though this book illustrated familiar Mother Goose rhymes in a unique way, I did not particularly like this book of rhymes because it combined realistic elements where fantasy is usually present.
This Land is Your Land is a song picture book recommended for students in preschool-grade 4. It is a songbook that is a tribute to the legendary folkThis Land is Your Land is a song picture book recommended for students in preschool-grade 4. It is a songbook that is a tribute to the legendary folk musician Woody Guthrie and his well-known song “This Land is Your Land”. This song combined with Kathy Jakobson’s watercolor illustrations depicts the natural beauty of the United States. A brief biography of Woody Guthrie and complete music and lyrics is present at the end of the book.
In this familiar songbook, Woody Guthrie’s lyrics are teamed with beautiful watercolor illustrations to tell the unique story of the opportunities and beauty of the United States. The paintings have a 1920’s and 1930’s feel, but still hold some truth today as soup kitchens, homeless families, and various family struggles are shown. Illustrated double-page landscapes reflect the song and show the varied landscape of the United States. A unique feature of the book are labeled vignettes that include song lyrics and quotes from Woody Guthrie. Details present within the illustrations including various sights, cities, towns, and urban areas bring the song to life and capture the interest of readers. The book ends with a short biography of the songwriter, as well as the music and lyrics to “This Land is Your Land.” This book is best used in the classroom to initiate discussion about the Dust Bowl and the Great Depression, or can be used as a resource for an inquiry project about our country. Since the text and illustrations work so well together, this book is likely to become a favorite of many readers. ...more
This themed collection of short animal poems is recommended for students in grades K-3 and has won the New York Times Best Illustrated Children's BookThis themed collection of short animal poems is recommended for students in grades K-3 and has won the New York Times Best Illustrated Children's Books (2000). In this book, twenty-one short, original poems and splendid paintings celebrate and mock a variety of animals.
These 21 short animal verse poems are light, whimsical, fun, and will bring lots of laughter. Many of the lines within many of the poems are humorous one liners and poke fun at animals from giraffes to porcupines. One example is "Some people wear fur coats of lynx. / I/ think/ that/ stynx." The illustrations are gouache paintings on brown paper bags and are full of textures, various designs, and uniqueness. The artwork has childlike qualities, but are not simplistic as they are animal portraits that are appropriate, cleaver, and unique. The text and illustrations work well together as they both are cleaver and have the intension of poking fun at various animals. This book of short animal poems is sure to be a delight for animal enthusiasts and poetry lovers alike. ...more
The Random House Book of Poetry is intended for students in grades K-5 and is considered a modern classic. Included in this anthology are over 500 poeThe Random House Book of Poetry is intended for students in grades K-5 and is considered a modern classic. Included in this anthology are over 500 poems that are divided into many broad subject areas like nature, seasons, living things, and home, among others as selected by poet Jack Prelutsky. Within the anthology are poems written by Emily Dickinson, Robert Louis Stevenson, Robert Frost, Langston Hughes, Nikki Giovanni, Gwendolyn Brooks, and Lewis Carroll, among others. Playground chants, anonymous rhymes, scary poems, silly verse, and even some sad poems are represented and carefully indexed by title, author, first line, and subject. Colorful illustrations are also present throughout the anthology.
This anthology collection gives children a taste of exceptional writing of several poets as it spans over several decades. In this anthology, children are exposed to poems in a variety of categories written by classic and newer poets alike. The poems tend to be silly, playful, and encompass a variety of topics, which will appeal to young readers. There are also illustrations on every page which bring the poems to life. This anthology would be best used in the classroom for choral reading, readers’ theatre, and performance theatre. This poetry collection is varied, upbeat, and complete, and is sure to be a hit for poetry lovers in home, school, and library settings.
The New Kid on the Block is a themed collection intended for students in grades K-6 and contains over 100 hilarious poems about strange creatures andThe New Kid on the Block is a themed collection intended for students in grades K-6 and contains over 100 hilarious poems about strange creatures and people in no particular order or sequence. Poems describe anything from jellyfish stew to a bouncing mouse, and a boneless chicken. Included are humorous illustrations and an index of titles, first lines, and other books written by the author.
This is a must read and possibly even own for all poetry lovers. All the poems written within this book evoke humor, interest, and creativity. Even the most ordinary and random things were brought to life through the language and illustrations used. This book is sure to be a favorite of many children of various ages as they can relate too many of the poems. “Homework, O Homework” is definitely my favorite and will ring true when many students hear it. The illustrations also bring a lot of life to the poems, as the illustrations and poems alike are they are very interesting, creative, entertaining, and funny. This poetic author is a definitely comparable to Shel Silverstein, as his fans will definitely enjoy the poems written by Jack Prelutsky. ...more
Sweetgrass Basket is recommended for students in grades 6-8 and is a book written in free verse poetry. This book describes the lives of two Mohawk siSweetgrass Basket is recommended for students in grades 6-8 and is a book written in free verse poetry. This book describes the lives of two Mohawk sisters with alternating passages as each sister tells their life story in their own words. In alternating passages, two Mohawk sisters describe their lives at the Carlisle Indian Industrial School, a school that educates Native Americans, as they try to assimilate into white culture. It also describes how they feel about their mother’s death, life at the school, when one sister is accused of stealing, and death.
Overall, this book describes how two sisters feel in alternating poetic passages as they are shipped off to a boarding school, and try to hold on to their language and the few precious they have to remind them of their culture. This book describes how both sisters long for family, friendship, and a place to call home. However, trying to obtain these things results in tragic circumstances and ultimately the death of one sister. The inner-thought narratives allow readers to connect with the characters in a deep and emotional way. However, because the sisters have similar thoughts, it is sometimes hard to distinguish between the two. Overall, this poetic novel is compelling, authentic, and a sensitive and emotional portrayal of a part of history that is not widely known. ...more
This poem novel is recommended for students in grades 7 and up and is a Schneider Family Book Award (2008). This book chronicles the life and struggle This poem novel is recommended for students in grades 7 and up and is a Schneider Family Book Award (2008). This book chronicles the life and struggles of Josie, a seventh grade girl with Cerebral Palsy, who lives with her mother and grandmother. It also describes in detail a blooming friendship between Josie and Jordan, her neighbor, as well as challenges, which include her grandmother’s illness and her best friend going off to camp for the summer.
This is a heartwarming and inspiring story is hard to put down. The unique poetry format also adds to the appeal of the book. It is a quick read and a relatable book with issues regarding friendship, life struggles, illness, and family. Josie, the narrator of the book, is bright and does not fully realize her limitations or her strengths. The language used throughout the free verse poetry novel is also particularly strong. Reaching for Sun has wide appeal for readers of diverse abilities. Reluctant readers will be attracted to the simplicity of the text, with short chapters and lots of white space on each page. Every poem included really adds to the flow of the book, so much so that some readers may not even realize that they are reading poetry. However, more advanced readers will find enjoyment in the poetic structure used throughout the book. Overall, this book is touching, uniquely written, and will appeal to a wide range of readers as they discover what it feels like to live with a disability. ...more
Hana’s Suitcase has won many awards. It is recommended for students in grades 4-8. I listened to it in the form of an audio book. It is a true story wHana’s Suitcase has won many awards. It is recommended for students in grades 4-8. I listened to it in the form of an audio book. It is a true story when in March 2000, a suitcase arrived at a children's Holocaust education center in Tokyo, Japan. It read, Hana Brady, May 16, 1931, and Waisenkind, the German word for orphan. Everyone who saw the suitcase on display was full of questions and wanted the Holocaust education center director to find answers. In this audio book, the center director searches for clues across Europe and North America. The suitcase takes her back through seventy years, to a Czech town where Hana and her family lived and where their lives were dismantled by the invasion of the Nazis.
The account is a quick listen, and centers around the Holocaust, and a girl lost in this part of history. It includes many details and facts about the Holocaust, but is also a suspenseful mystery, as family drama, revelations, and the mystery of the suitcase is revealed. Listening to the story in an audiobook form really brings this story to life, and makes readers feel like they are back in this time period, as there are different voices for different people. The language used to explain this story also brought life and emotion to the story. Overall, it is an interesting and intriguing story that was very enjoyable to listen to, explaining well this tragic and heartbreaking time in history.
The Magic School Bus Inside the Earth is intended for students in grades 2-5 and is a Reading Rainbow book. In this Magic School Bus book, Ms Frizzle'The Magic School Bus Inside the Earth is intended for students in grades 2-5 and is a Reading Rainbow book. In this Magic School Bus book, Ms Frizzle's class learns about different kinds of rocks and the formation of the earth as they go on a field trip to the inside of the earth.
This is an informative, exciting, and attractive informational book that takes readers to the center of the earth. Readers learn something new with the turn of every page as they explore the crust, mantle, and inner and outer cores of the earth. The class also collects rock samples before they are forced back to the classroom by a volcanic eruption. The illustrations are done in a watercolor cartoon format and dialogue bubbles contain information about the earth or humorous comments. The pages of information about rocks from the students reports and a section that discusses the real and fantasy aspects of the book is also helpful. The text and illustrations are a bit cluttered for my taste, but would be best used in the classroom when introducing or reviewing aspects of the earth. Readers of this book will be taken on an exciting, unforgettable adventure.
If The Walls Could Talk: Family Life at the White House is recommended for students in grades 3-6. It is a book that walks readers through the lives oIf The Walls Could Talk: Family Life at the White House is recommended for students in grades 3-6. It is a book that walks readers through the lives of the presidents in order from George Washington to George W. Bush. Throughout the book, interesting facts are mentioned relating to their stays at the White House. The presidents mentioned look like bobble heads and at the end of the book, each president answers a frequently asked question about the White House.
The trivia given throughout the book is funny, surprising, intriguing, and engaging. . The presidents are drawn with have oversized heads, looking much like bobble figures. Some also have dialogue bubbles with relevant facts and comments. The frequently asked questions section located in the back of the book also gave some useful information. The illustrations are in a political cartoon style. This story greatly reminded me of the book So You Want To Be President? It even had some similar facts represented throughout the book. This book would be best used in the classroom as an introduction to a government lesson, unit, or inquiry project. ...more
Castle is a Caldecott Honor book (1978) and is recommended for students in grades 2 and up. This book explains the creation and construction of Lord KCastle is a Caldecott Honor book (1978) and is recommended for students in grades 2 and up. This book explains the creation and construction of Lord Kevin’s castle. This is a progressionary tale and it explains the tools, materials, and workers used and needed to build the castle. Through this book, readers will see and experience the amount of time and methodical work put into the construction of a castle.
Readers will get to see and experience the amount of hard work that goes into the building of a Castle, specifically during the time period of 1277 through 1305. It is definitely a unique and interesting book done in very beautiful and detailed pen-and-ink illustrations. Children who love to know how things work will greatly enjoy and appreciate this book as the author’s interest for process and engineering shines through. The text and illustrations work well together, as they are both very detailed. Readers will also gain some insight into the true meaning of cooperation when reading this book. Overall, this is a very detailed and interesting book; one that I am sure will be of interest to older elementary and middle school boys.