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    16 Poetry Picture Book Recommendations for National Poetry Month

    Looking for poetry picture book recommendations?  The KidLitPicks Book Club has a few recommendations.

    Parents have the capability to open the door to an incredible world for their child(ren). They have the sole pleasure of sharing the beauty and wonder of poetry with them. Poetry books contain soothing rhythms and rhymes, short, simple sentences and clever repetition of key words and phrases. There is nothing like the rhythm of words flowing together to form a story in such rich language. Poetry is such a happy thing! It’s magical to watch children’s eyes, minds, and hearts dancing along the rhythmical lines of poetry and into a lifelong love of lyrical language.

    The variety of language and structure in poetry is great for children’s growing brains and imaginations. It’s also refreshing for the grownups who read with them! With National Poetry Month now that we’re in April, it’s a splendid time to let poetry blossom in your household and in the young hearts of your children.

    Finding Wonders, by Jeannine Atkins 

    “’Knowing our history can make us stronger.’ Having examples of strong, determined, intelligent women from history for our own girls to read about can make them stronger.” — Summer from @readingisourthing

    Things to Do, by ​​Elaine Magliaro and Catia Chien

    Things to Do shows readers that wonder and enjoyment can be found anywhere and everywhere.” — Mel from @spiky_penelope

    A Child’s Garden of Verses, by Robert Louis Stevenson

    “It’s easy to hear [poetry] and immediately jump to Shel Silverstein… But before there was Shel, there was Stevenson.” — Katie from @afriendlyaffair

    Noisy Poems, by Debi Gliori

    “It makes a nice change from stories every now and again and it’s worth mentioning that it is chosen by Little Miss Bookhabit quite regularly so it gets the child friendly seal of approval.” — Claire from @alittlebookhabit

    A Family of Poems, by Caroline Kennedy and Jon J Muth

    When read aloud, poetry is rhythm and music and sounds and beats. Young children may not understand all the words or meaning, but they’ll feel the rhythms, get curious about what the sounds mean and perhaps want to create their own.” — Leah from @astoryaday

    Feelings, by Richard Jones and Libby Walden

    “Full to the brim of delightful illustrations and with a brilliant use of colour, this book is a beautifully poetic look into a wide range of emotions ranging from ‘happy’ to ‘angry’ to ‘alone’ and ‘calm.’” —  Kim from @bookbairn

    Voyage, Billy Collins and Karen Romagna

    “My selection has sentimental value as it was given to me by a dear friend to celebrate the arrival of our daughter.” — Miranda from @bookbloom

    Poems to Perform, by Julia Donaldson

    “This book was such a great find and has propelled me to explore poetry and performance in the classroom.” — De from @books_and_babycinos

    Animal Ark, by Kwame Alexander and Joel Sartore

    “Stunning images and beautiful text! National Geographic does it again!” — Arielle from @childrensbooksgalore

    What Are You Glad About? What Are You Mad About? by Judith Viorst

    “This collection of thoughtful, funny, and touching poems is grouped into child-centred topics, such as feelings, school stuff, family, home, friends, help, best and worst, seasons, mysteries, and unfinished business.” — Rossa from @curiouslittlepeople

    Tan to Tamarind: Poems about the Color Brown, by Malathi Michelle Iyengar  and Jamel Akib

    “Who knew there were so many beautiful shades of the color brown!” — Charnaie from @hereweeread

    The Moon and Me, by Anna and Brian Boyter

    “This easy read is perfect for little ones, especially with its lyrical text.” — Wendy from @homegrownreader

    A Poem for Peter, by Andrea Davis Pinkney, Lou Fancher, and Steve Johnson

    “It’s a heart-burstingly inspiring and beautiful read. And one that I foresee becoming a well-thumbed, much-discussed book in this household for years to come.” — Shannon from @ohcreativeday

    Poetrees, by Douglas Florian 

    “Ripe with information, Douglas Florian’s poems in Poetrees are perfect for nature lovers and outdoor adventurers.” — Jamie from @smallysbookshelf

    Come With Me To Paris, by Gloria Fowler and Min Heo

    “I couldn’t wait to get my hands on it and share my love of this big beautiful city with my kids.” — Michelle from @the.book.report

    The Land of Nod, by Robert Louis Stevenson and Robert Hunter 

    “It’s a phantasmagoric journey through twilight shadows and moonlight.” — Liam from @words.and.illustrations

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    Your turn: What poetry/haiku books would you add to this list?  Feel free to share in the comments.

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    national poetry month, poetry challenge

    Poetry Reading and Craft Challenge for Kids: Week 5

    It’s the final week of our poetry reading and craft challenge.  I hope you and your kids have been following along each week and have enjoyed it!  For the last week of the challenge I selected a poem about summer.

    Finally it seems like the heavy grey veil has been lifted over the Northeast. The trees are starting to get green again. Flowers are starting to bloom.  Spring has sprung and you can already feel summer coming up around the corner. This is my favorite time of year. It’s a time of anticipation, celebration and FUN!

    Here the poem we’ll be memorizing this week:

    This week’s craft was “Popsicles” made out of construction paper and popsicle sticks.  You can also choose to make ice cream cones or another craft of your choice.
    Materials Needed:
    • Construction paper of varying colors
    • popsicle sticks
    • scissors
    • glue
    • pencil
    First, trace and cut out the shapes for your popsicles and decorations.  We used a mixture of circles, squares and rectangles.  Finally, use glue to decorate your popsicles to your liking.~Until next time!

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    Poetry Reading and Craft Challenge for Kids: Week 4

    Hello Friends!

    Apologies for the late post, but I had a fun-filled weekend and didn’t manage to update the blog until now.

    Hooray!  We made it to week #4 of our poetry reading and craft challenge!  For the last two weeks I decided to choose longer poems and projects geared towards older kids.  Of course I still expect you to read the poems to the smaller children and work on memorization 🙂

    Below is the poem we’ll be working on memorizing this week.  In honor of Earth Day coming up on Wednesday I chose a poem about planting trees.  I hope it resonates with you and your little ones.

    Click here for a larger version of the poem.

    This week’s craft was so simple and fun to work on!  The kids assisted by handing me the scraps of the ribbon.  I did everything else.
    It’s a “tree” made from a stick I found outside, scrap ribbon I had at home, and a piece of twine. Pinterest inspired, of course!

    For this project you’ll need:

    • 1 stick
    • scrap ribbon (I used brown and green scraps)
    • twine
    • glue gun and glue sticks
    • scissors
    • lighter (to prevent the ends of the ribbon from fraying)
    First, decide which ribbon you’re going to use and cut it if necessary.  (Note: in order to prevent the ends of the ribbon from fraying use a lighter to burn them.)  Next, start tying the ribbon onto the stick working from the bottom to the top.  Finally, attach a piece of twine to the top for hanging up your tree.  Easy peasy!  These trees would also be cute for Christmas tree ornaments!
    ~ Until next time!

     

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    Poetry Reading and Craft Challenge for Kids: Week 3

    It’s week three of our poetry reading and craft challenge!  Have you been following along with your little ones?  I hope so.

    This week’s poem and craft is all about caterpillars.  I don’t particularly like caterpillars, but I think they are are truly fascinating creatures.  There is something so interesting to me about watching them undergo metamorphosis and emerge as a beautiful winged creature.

    I hope you and your children enjoy this week’s poem and craft selection!

    Here is the poem we’ll be memorizing this week.  Click here if you want to print it out.

    This week’s craft is caterpillars made with pom pom’s, googly eyes and clothespins.

    Instructions:  Simply hot glue pom poms onto a clothespin then add two googly eyes.  Doesn’t get any easier than that.  You can also add antenna and legs using pipecleaners if you want to jazz it up a bit.

    Feel free to do this craft or one of your own.  Enjoy!

    ~ Until next week!

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    Poetry Reading and Craft Challenge for Kids: Week 2

    Happy Easter!

    This week we’ll be memorizing a poem about raindrops and flowers growing.  Please note the original author of the poem I selected is unknown in case you’re wondering.

    Here is the poem:

     

    You can either choose one of the two crafts we did or create your own.  The raindrops and umbrella craft should be pretty straightforward.  To do this you’ll need:

    • Cupcake liners (we used 2)
    • Scissors (or a sharp object to poke a hole through the top of the cupcake liner)
    • Pipecleaners (we used 1 and cut it in half)
    • Sharpie marker
    • 1 piece of construction paper (we used blue, but you could also use white or another color)
    • blue paint and paintbrushes (or a blue marker/crayon for the raindrops)
    • gluestick or glue gun
    If you and your kids want to tackle the paper plate flower craft you’ll need:
    • 1 white paper plate
    • 1 piece of green construction paper (for the flower stem and leaves)
    • 1 piece of white paper (for the flower petals)
    • scissors
    • paint and paintbrushes (we used purple, pink and yellow)
    • glue gun
    Here is a pictoral tutorial for both craft projects:
    Again, I’m not going to include step-by-step written instructions as I think these should be easy to figure out on your own.  As always, please ask questions if you need to.  I’m willing to help!I hope you and your little ones enjoy this week’s poem and craft project(s)!

     

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    Poetry Reading and Craft Challenge Week 1

    Since Spring has finally sprung (well, sort of if you live in the Northeast like me) and Easter is right around the corner, I thought we’d kick off the first week of this challenge with an Easter themed poem and activity.

    This poem — like all the ones I’ve chosen is short and should be pretty easy to memorize in one week.  The craft activity idea was inspired by my beloved Pinterest website.  I added my own personal touches just to spice it up a bit.

    Remember, the goal of this challenge is two-fold: to memorize the poems with your kids and work on the craft activity together at some point during the week.  That’s it!  Also, you don’t have to be crafty to work on the projects.  The main thing is for you and the kids to have fun and to have the experience together.  We’re not going for perfection here.

    Here is the first poem we’ll be memorizing:

     

    Click here if you’d like to print this poem.
    Here is the craft project: Peek-a-boo bunny!

    Click here to open this tutorial in a separate window.

    Craft Project Notes

    For this project you’ll need:

    • 2 white paper plates
    • green felt or construction paper
    • pink felt or construction paper (optional – for the inside of the bunny ears and nose)
    • pink fabric (optional – for the inside of the bunny ears nose – this is what I used)
    • green ribbon (optional – if you want to add a bow)
    • 1 black Sharpie marker
    • glue
    • scissors
    • stapler
    I think the pictoral tutorial is easy to follow so I won’t include step-by-step instructions.Don’t forget to recite the poem daily with your child(ren) and most importantly don’t forget to pull down the hands covering the bunny’s face when you say ‘peek-a-boo’ at the end of the poem.  So fun!

    I’d love to see your bunny craft projects or hear from you.  Feel free to drop me a line at hereweeread {at} gmail {dot} com or leave a comment in the comments section below.

    ~Until next time!

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    children's literacy, national poetry month, poetry challenge

    Poetry Reading and Craft Challenge for Kids!

    Calling all poetry lovers!

    In case you didn’t already know April is National Poetry Month.  I admit that I am not a big reader of poetry nowadays unless it’s in a children’s book. I enjoyed all of the Shel Silverstein classics as a child, but I kind of lost my interest in reading poetry sometime during high school.  You know, when it wasn’t required reading in school anymore…LOL!  I do love poetry though, especially poems that rhyme.

    That’s why I’m so glad to see there are so many wonderful poetry books out there for my children.  I think it is important to introduce poetry to kids from the very beginning of their lives.  Research shows that poetry promotes literacy, builds community, and fosters emotional resilience.  Awesome, right?

    In addition, when read aloud, poetry is rhythm and music and sounds and beats. Young children, babies and preschoolers included, may not understand all the words or meaning, but they’ll surely feel the rhythms, get curious about what the sounds mean and perhaps want to create their own.  I remember I used to love making up my own poems as a kid…oh, the memories!

    I also find it interesting that contrary to popular belief amongst kids, boys get really into poetry when brought in through rhythm and rhyme. It’s the most kinesthetic of all literature, it’s physical and full-bodied which activates your heart and soul.  Boys, included.  I really believe this to be true as I’ve witnessed Mr. Tickles seems to pay close attention whenever I’m reading them a book with catchy rhymes.

    So since National Poetry Month is coming up, I thought it would be fun to start a poetry reading challenge for kids.  See below for the deets…

    WHAT: A poetry reading and craft challenge for kids!  It doesn’t matter if your child is a newborn, toddler, preschooler, adolescent, pre-teen or teenager.  All kids (and adults) are welcome to participate.

    HOW:  This challenge will be simple.  All you need to do is memorize one (short) poem per week with your kids during the month of April.  In addition, you can do one of the crafts I suggest or choose your own.  The crafts will be related to the overall theme of the poem.  Don’t worry, you don’t need to be crafty either.

    WHEN: Starting this Sunday, March 29th, I’ll post the first poem of the week to be memorized as well as the craft(s) to go along with it.  You’ll have the whole week to memorize the poem with your kids and work on the craft(s) at your leisure.  The remaining poems/crafts will be introduced each Sunday on April 5th, 12th, 19th and 26th.

    I hope you’ll join me in this challenge with your little ones.  National Poetry Month is a great time to bring some poetry into your heart and home.

    Happy Reading!

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