Week 2: Children’s Lit Quest

Summersaults Cover      Winter Eyes

There appears to be a connection between some of the books I picked out to read this week. I heard about Douglas Florian’s Winter Eyes while at a National Writing Project (NWP) workshop a few weeks back and decided to look for it at the library on my next trip.  To my delight I also found a similar book, Summersault, and grabbed it too.  I was drawn to his beautiful illustrations and delighted by the clever poems in both the books.  Portraying both seasons through poetry, Florian has captured glimpses of each with clarity and simplicity.Douglas Florian

Teacher “ah ha” moment:  The lightbulb idea that clicks when you read through the book and think, “I can use this to teach…”

One of the presenters at the NWP conference challenged us to read and try to find that “ah ha” in our reading.  I must admit I tend to do this when I read novels, but hadn’t extended the concept to books for younger students…AND WHY NOT?  Not sure.  But I will give that some thaought.

SO now I am reading with the hopes of finding the Teacher “ah ha” and will share them here.

And so, while reading “Graze Days” in Summersault one came to me.  The poem is about summer days from a cow’s perspective.  Point of View, here we come.

Shiver me timbers Pirates PirateTo finish off my Douglas Florian books for the week, I read Shiver Me Timbers! Pirate Poems and Paintings.  I love this writer/illustrator for his ability to capture the essence of his subject with a minimum of words.  “Ah ha”  I could use the poem “The Pirates’ Code of Conduct” and teach about vivid verbs!

I can’t wait to return to the library and find some of Florian’s other books.  I think we will order a few for the library at SOAR, too.

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