Blogger Paige Bentley-Flannery

Poetry! Bugs to Dinosaurs

April is National Poetry Month! This month always reminds me of why kids love poetry. Poetry is loud! Poetry makes children laugh! Poetry is silly! Poetry is dinosaurs, avocados, bugs, recess, history, weather and so much more!  As I review new poetry books, looking for just the right collection of poems. I’m ready to visit schools in Central Oregon.

A selection of new 2018 poems:

In The Past by David Elliot Illustrated by Matthew Trueman
Items: dinosaur puppets, lamenated photos of dinosaurs
Fun Addition: The time line from 544 million years ago – 1.8 million years ago – present.
Favorite Interactive poems: Arms out! Flying, slithering, chomping…
Maganeura – Carboniferous Period
Quetzalcoatlus – Cretaceous Period
Titanoboa and Carbonemys – Paleogene Period

Crawly School For Bugs: Poems to Drive You Buggy by David L. Harrison Illustrated by Julie Bayless
Items: jumping plastic bugs, bug puppets, felt bugs, bug glasses, bug headband/hats
Fun Addition: Create new bug noises with a Cicada Call!
Favorite Interactive Poems: Tiny loud bug noise – Ready?
Crawly School – welcome!
What’s Left of Termite Class – what would you eat?
What We Learn in Bird Class – watch out for the beak!

Friends and Foes: Poems About Us All by Douglas Florian
Items: stones, friendship bracelets, lemons, one lime, a dime, basketball
Fun Addition: Let’s talk about friendship!
Favorite Interactive Poems:
What Friends Are For
Old Friends – two volunteers – read a poem for two voices
I’m Friends with Trees
Give and Take
The Fabulous Five – Basketball!

I’m Just No Good at Rhyming and Other Nonsense for Mischievous Kids and Immature Grown-Ups by Chris Harris Illustrated by Lane Smith
Items: Avocado, sock, jigsaw puzzle, wizard hat
Fun Addition: Index of Titles (In the Book), Outdex (of Titles That Did Not Make The Final Cut)
Favorite Interactive Poems:
If You Ever Have to Memorize A Poem of Twenty Lines or Longer and Deliver it to Your Class, Then This is a Pretty Good Choice – avocado in hand, sock hidden
Unfair Riddle #1, #2, #3
Jigsaw Puzzle Difficulty Chart – scatter same color jigsaw puzzle pieces or toss them in the air
Moral: If It’s Not Your Magic Wand, Leave It Alone – wizard hat on!

What new poems are you sharing this year?

For more poetry ideas, please explore past “Poetry Paige” ALSC Blog posts.

One comment

  1. Amy Losak

    This looks like such a fun list. Please take a look at the titles from, founded by two poets, Chad and Alexis. They’ve published several extraordinary kids’ poetry books: A GIFT FROM GREENSBORO, by poet/teacher Quraysh Ali Lansana; and 13 WAYS OF LOOKING AT A BLACK BOY, by poet/teacher, Tony Medina. And take a look at a new title: H IS FOR HAIKU: A TREASURY OF HAIKU FROM A TO Z, by Haiku Society of America charter member, Sydell Rosenberg. This is my mother — and she knew her haiku. A teacher in New York City, she was one of the first members of HSA in 1968 and 50 years later, I’m a member now, as well. This simple, striking collection of poems celebrates a number of “small moments” we may ordinarily overlook in our daily lives. All these poetry books, beautifully illustrated, are worth your time. Thank you!

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