Saturday, December 1, 2012
NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC BOOK OF ANIMAL POETRY edited by J. Patrick Lewis
I considered titling this post, 'WHEN A CHILDREN'S POETRY BOOK BECOMES A COFFEE TABLE BOOK" because that's what I think about the NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC POETRY BOOK. Not only is it a must have for your classroom library (and I'm pretty sure it's one of those I will re-buy every year, because I know that kids will wear it out), it's also a coffee table book. One that adults will pick up and enjoy. One that I will definitely be buying for Christmas presents. It's absolutely perfect.
NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC POETRY BOOK FOR CHILDREN contains over 200 poems. The poems are divided into sections: The Big Ones, The Little Ones, The Winged Ones, The Water Ones, The Strange Ones, The Quiet Ones, and The Noisy Ones. Poets run the gamut from Robert Frost, Rudyard Kipling, Alfred Lord Tennyson to Valerie Worth, Jack Prelutsky, and J. Patrick Lewis. Each page, or two-page spread focuses on one animal. Sometimes there is one poem, and sometimes there are three or four. (When I put my teacher hat on, I can see kids comparing the poems, or choosing a subject and collecting three or four poems that they love).
The background for every page is one or two or three National Geographic photographs. And they are absolutely beautiful- so much so, that readers will want to make many trips through this book, some to savor the poetry, but probably just as many to enjoy the art.
J. Patrick Lewis has also done a fabulous job with the end material. There is a two-page spread about writing animal poems, and another two pages of resources for different types of poetry. There are also four different kinds of indexes- title, first line, author, and subject. You will definitely be able to find the poems you love quickly!
I'm buying this book for every reader I know this Christmas. It's sure to be a favorite!