Sunday, April 20, 2008

It's Snowing! It's Snowing!

A. Title: It's Snowing! It's Snowing! Winter Poems

B. Author: Jack Prelutsky

C. Illustrator: Yossi Abolafia

D. Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers Inc. & An I Can Read Book

E. Genre: Poetry

F. Reading Level: 2-3

G. Summary: This is a wonderful book of winter and snow poems! A cute short poem in It's Snowing! is called "Stuck in the Snow: Stuck in the snow, - dad's pickup truck. 'Sorry, dad, - that's your bad luck.' - 'Shovel it out!' - he smiled and said. - I guess it's my bad luck instead." The book progresses from the last leaf falling and bird leaving to end autumn through to when the snowman is almost completely melted away as spring is on its way. There are short winter days, snowball fights, and ice skating trips. Some of the poem titles include "It's Snowing! It's Snowing!," "One Last Little Leaf," "Winter Signs," "I am Freezing!," "When Snowflakes are Fluttering," and "The Snowman's Lament." Each poem has illustrations to go along with it that are detailed and a lot of fun. The illustration spreads vary depending on the size of the poem and the poem itself. The illustration sizes are full single page, half page, and one fourth page. The medium appears to be watercolor paints, and they are bright, friendly, fun, and great for younger children's literature.

H. Response: I really enjoyed Jack Prelutsky's poems. They have a perfect combination of an essence of childhood and being a kid mixed with all the feelings that come along with the winter season. The book is an easy read, and I had fun reading the whole thing; each poem was a small story inside the whole story of all the poems. The poems in It's Snowing! fall into the lyric or expressive category because the tell about the different characteristics of winter. Some of the poems were about enjoying the winter perks like snow and snowmen, but some of the poems were about freezing or the strong winds; both of the views on winter made a the poems all together feel like they really captured winter. The illustrations are bright and cherie with the cover being my favorite illustration in the whole book. I love the way the snowflakes looking falling down on the little boy's face with the warm yellow background.

I. Teaching Ideas: It's Snowing! would be such an excellent poetry book for classroom application, especially if you were wanting to incorporate seasonal changes: the end of autumn, winter, and into the the start of spring. In the student activities section of Scholastic's website, there is a great exercise where students can learn about Jack Prelutsky's poetry techniques, get help brainstorming for their own poem, steps to help write the poem, and then the students publish them online. The has a lot of great resources for winter activites and lesson plans, thematic units on Jack Prelutsky, and ice and snow units.

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