Picture Books & Poetry


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Nancy's picks for the best picture books & poetry of the 1990s and ideas for using them in the classroom. Compiled by Nancy Polette 1998.
Last updated: Tuesday, October 07, 2008
Agee, John. So Many Dynamos and Other Palindromes. Farrar, 1994. (Gr 4-8)
How many palindromes can you name?
Bang, Molly. Goose. Blue Sky Pr., 1996. All ages.
A small goose finds its wings with a little help.
Brown, Ruth. Toad. Dutton, 1997. All ages.
List words to describe a toad. Then share this deliciously yucky treat!
Carson, Jo. The Great Shaking. Orchard, 1994. (Gr 2-4)
A bear is awakened from its winter sleep by the New Madrid earthquake. Write about a special day at school. Give copies to your local historical society.
Cribben, June. Into the Castle. Candlewick, 1996. (Gr Pre K-2)
A good model for creating a circle story.
Cushman, Doug. ABC Mystery. HarperCollins, 1993. (Gr K-3)
List words from A-Z connected with a mystery story.
Day, David. King of the Woods. Four Winds, 1993. (Gr Pre K-2)
A small wren captures an apple from a large moose. Try this pattern for different animals: I had a wren, her name was Twirp, I don't know why but she loved to _________.
Edwards, Pamela. Some Smug Slug. HarperCollins, 1996. (Gr 2-4)
A slug takes an alliterative journey into the mouth of a toad. Try alliterative animal names: Terrible tiger etc.
Flor Ada. Alma. Gathering the Sun. Lothrop, 1997 All ages
An Hispanic alphabet book that rejoices the land and the culture. Create an ABC book about your community.
Ginsburg. Mira. Clay Boy. Greenwillow, 1997. (Gr Pre K-2)
Clay Boy eats everything in sight including his Grandma and Grandpa. Compare with Polette's The Little Old Woman and the Hungry Cat. Greenwillow, 1989.
Hopkins, Lee Bennett. Hand in Hand. Simon & Schuster, 1994. U.S. History in Poetry. (Gr 3-6)
Many poems suitable for choral reading for all eras of U.S. history.
Hutchins, Pat. Shrinking Mouse. Greenwillow, 1997. (Gr K-2)
As owl flies off, his friends watch him getting smaller. Will he disappear altogether? Examine a variety of illustrations. Where are the smaller things on the page? The larger things?
Lester, Alison. Yikes. Houghton Mifflin, 1995. (Gr 3-6)
Introduce geographic regions with wild adventures in which the reader takes part.
Lund, Julian. Way Out West Lives a Coyote Named Frank. Dutton, 1993 (Gr 1-4)
An excellent pattern for reporting on an animal.
Maestro, Gulio. Riddle City U.S.A. HarperCollins, 1995. (Gr 3-6)
What state do cars visit ? Rhode Island.
Martin, Jr. Bill. A Beautiful Feast for a Big King Cat. HarperCollins, 1994. (Gr Pre K-2)
A small mouse learns it isn't wise to tease a big cat. Good repeating patterns.
McBratney, Sam. The Dark at the Top of the Stairs. Candlewick, 1996 (Gr Pre K-2)
Seeing a shadow at the top of the stairs is scary but ________________ is REALLY scary!
Novak, Matt. Mouse TV. Orchard, 1994. (Gr 1-3)
Each page can be a starter for a writing project as a mouse family tries to live without TV.
Polette, Nancy. The Hole by the Apple Tree. Greenwillow, 1992. An ABC Adventure. (Gr K-3)
Can Harold and his friends save Snow White from the wicked Queen?
Roth, Susan. My Love for You. Dial, 1997.
'Is bigger than one bear, taller than two _________'
Shannon, George. Tomorrow's Alphabet. Greenwillow, 1996. (Gr K-3)
Q is for scraps, tomorrow's quilt.
Create a tomorrow's alphabet book about your school.
Ex: D is for chalk, tomorrow's dust.
Shannon, George. True Lies. Greenwillow, 1997.
Students are asked to guess the solution to eighteen tricky tales.
Shles, Larry. Nose Drops. Squib Publications (1996). 1264 Moncoeur, St. Louis, MO. 63146. (8.00 inc post.) Gr 4-8
A small nose wants to achieve greatness like Julius Sneezer. A book filled with puns.
Smith, Lane.The Happy Hockey Family. Viking, 1993. (Gr 4-6)
A parody of the Dick and Jane readers.
Stanley, Diane. Rumplestiltskin's Daughter. Morrow, 1997. (Gr 1-4)
The greedy king learns a lesson from this young miss! Brainstorm: What other new characters could arise from familiar tales?
Walton, Rick. What to do When a Bug Climbs in Your Mouth. Lothrop, 1996. (Gr 2-4)
Gross poems about insects that kids will love.
Wegman, William. William Wegman's Mother Goose. Hyperion, 1996. (Gr K-4)
Mother Goose characters portrayed by dogs.