Tag Archives: nature

Sweet Dreamers

Sweet Dreamers

Ever wonder what animals dream about? In Sweet Dreamers, a creative nonfiction picture book, author/illustrator Isabelle Simler transports readers into different animals’ realms, while departing natural facts about each creature through her lyrical description of how they dream. 

The ant “gathers and collects hundreds of quick naps” while the seahorse “as if on a carousel, the seahorse dreams at a gallop” and the spider “dreams on a tightrope – the lacework pattern of his sleep hanging by a thread.”

As a longer picture book, Simler uses two-page landscape spreads to introduce a new environment of animals. Each animal receives a close-up and a full-body illustration.

A perfect read aloud bedtime story.

This book promotes creativity and imagination.

WHY I LIKE THIS BOOK: I like this book because the lyrical words and beautiful illustrations speak to the reader and immediately take the reader into each animal’s dreamtime. Strong word choices seamlessly blend each animal’s natural characteristics into evocative poetry.

TITLE: Sweet Dreamers

AUTHOR: Isabelle Simler

ILLUSTRATOR: Isabelle Simler

PUBLISHER: Eerdmans Books for Young Readers, 2019

Originally published in France 2017

English language translation by Sarah Ardizzone, 2019

AGE GROUP: 4-7

TOPICS: bedtime, nature-based poetry

CREATIVE COMPONENTS: creativity, imagination, nature

LEARNING EXTENSIONS:

1) Watch your pet or a video that shows a sleeping animal. Make a list of words or phrases that describe that animal. Make another list that describes how you think you look when you sleep. Using words from both lists, write a poem about your sleeping animal and you.

2) Although Isabelle Simler crafted her illustrations digitally, it reminds me of scratch art. Make your own scratch art. Visit this blogpost for DIY easy scratch art:

EXTENDING CONNECTIONS:

To learn more about author/illustrator Isabelle Simler, visit:

http://www.letstalkpicturebooks.com/2018/12/lets-talk-illustrators-92-isabelle.html

Poetree

Poetree”

Each season is introduced with a rhyming couplet. 

Followed by acrostic poems that inspire wonder about the seasons.

Illustrations bring readers into this seasonal world. 

This story promotes creative components of imagination, originality, nature, and flexible thinking.

WHY I LIKE THIS BOOK: I like this book because the poems are written in kid-friendly language that shows originality about a commonly written topic. 

TITLE:Poetree

POEMS by: Caroline Pignat

ILLUSTRATOR: Francois Thisdale

PUBLISHER: Red Deer Press, 2018

AGE GROUP: 5-7

TOPIC(S): changing seasons, poetry

CREATIVE COMPONENTS: imagination, flexible thinking, originality, nature

LEARNING EXTENSIONS:

1) What is your favorite season? Using your senses, make a table-list of things that show that season. 

SEASON: Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer

TasteSmellSightTouchHear
     
     
     
     
     

From your table-list, pick words to create an image of your season by drawing a picture and “hiding” your words in your picture.

2) Seasons change and so do you. Think about what new things you learned or did during the last year. What new thing(s) did you learn or do in Winter, Spring, Summer, and Fall? 

3) An acrostic poem is where the first, last or other letters in a line spell out a word. Pick a seasonal word to write an acrostic poem.

EXTENDING CONNECTIONS:

To learn more about poet Caroline Pignat, visit:

https://www.carolinepignat.com/caroline.html

To learn more about illustrator Francois Thisdale, visit:

https://www.thisdale.com/bio_e.htm

Trees

Trees”

Poet Verlie Hutchens has a gift for words that bring trees to life in such a way that readers can truly relate to.  

Read these lines: “Little Red Bud plays hide-and-seek,” “pink-purple giggles,” “Sycamore, the fashion queen, wears a jigsaw-puzzle gown…” and “White Pine, unruly uncle…”

Each tree’s unique personality and character is perfectly described, sometimes humorously.

Each tree is illustrated in its natural environment. Jing Jing Tsong’s illustrative technique combines traditional printmaking and digital collage.

This story promotes creative components of imagination, flexible thinking, and perspective.

WHY I LIKE THIS BOOK: I like this book because I enjoy picturing the trees as the characters that the poet describes. I appreciate that the illustrations depict the trees as they would be found in nature, including animals and people. 

TITLE:Trees

POEMS by: Verlie Hutchens

ILLUSTRATOR: Jing Jing Tsong

PUBLISHER: Beach Lane Books, 2019

AGE GROUP: 5-8

TOPIC(S): trees, poetry, personification

CREATIVE COMPONENTS: imagination, perspective, flexible thinking

LEARNING EXTENSIONS:

1) Take a nature walk in your community. Observe the trees that you find along the way. Write a poem about one of the trees you found.

2) Practice your creative flexible thinking. Think up at least five answers to each of the following questions. How is a tree like a blanket? How is a tree like a bicycle? How is a tree like a star?

EXTENDING CONNECTIONS:

To learn more about author Verlie Hutchens, visit:

https://www.simonandschuster.com/authors/Verlie-Hutchens/502006236

To learn more about illustrator Jing Jing Tsong, visit:

https://www.jingjingtsong.com/about