Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Poetry Book Review: "NCTE Award Poetry"


Cullinan, Bernice. A jar of tiny stars: poems by ncte award-winning poets. Honesdale, PA: Wordsong Boyds Mills Press, 1996. Illustrations by Andi MacLeod. Portraits by Marc Nadel. ISBN: 978-1-5639-7087-0


This is an award-winning poetry anthology book containing works from David McCord, Aileen Fisher, Karla Kuskin, Myra Cohn Livingston, Eve Merriam, John Ciardi, Lilian Moore, Arnold Adoff, Valerie Worth and Barbara Esbensen. Each of the selected poets was nominated by the NCTE (National Council of Teachers of English Award) and their poems were chosen by more than 3,000 school children across the United States. Only five poems were selected for each poet and displayed in black and white texts with accompanying black and white illustrations. The poems' topics included animals, feelings, insects, food, an important historical figure, weather and objects. Each of the poems was easy to understand and the verse text format was easy to follow. Many poems provided humor, good rhythm and repetition to the reader that would make one want to say them out loud! The readers will value the brief biography of the poets in the back of the book but more so the individual quotes each poet shared about poetry before you read his or her works. This is a very kid-friendly poetry book and should be in every classroom!


"The Meal" by Karla Kuskin

Timothy Tompkins had turnips and tea.
The turnips were tiny.
He ate at least three.
And then, for dessert,
He had onions and ice.
He liked that so much
That he ordered it twice.
He had two cups of ketchup,
A prune, and a pickle.
"Delicious," said Timothy.
"Well worth a nickle."
He folded his napkin
And hastened to add,
"It's one of the loveliest breakfasts I've had."

Introducing to Poem:

This is a wonderful poem to introduce children to rhyme, rhythm, repetition and vocabulary! I feel that children will be drawn to the humor and rhythm of this poem. I would expect this poem to encourage children to sing or chant and enlighten them to use their imaginations when writing poems.

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