Mary's Reviews > Locomotion

Locomotion by Jacqueline Woodson
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's review
Nov 22, 09

bookshelves: poetry

Recommended for ages 10 and up

From Booklist
Lonnie is grieving and angry about the loss of his parents in a fire four years ago and about his subsequent separation from his beloved little sister, who is in foster care. He expresses his feelings in his fifth-grade poetry-writing class, encouraged by his wonderful teacher Ms. Marcus. In a series of free-verse poems and more formal verse, such as haiku and sonnets, he writes about his life and about the writing that "makes me remember." The framework of the story is fairy-tale idyllic--perfect family before the fire; happy-ever-after foster family by the end of the book--but the poetry is simple and immediate, true to the voice of the lost kid who finds himself with caring people and with words. The line breaks make for very easy reading, and Lonnie talks about those line breaks and about poetry forms, making this ideal for use in classrooms where students are reading and writing poetry. From rap to haiku, Woodson shows and tells that poetry is about who we are. Hazel Rochman

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