1998 Fall Picture Books & Poetry

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Nancy's picks for the best picture books & poetry of fall 1998 and ideas for using them in the classroom. Compiled by Nancy Polette 1998.
Last updated: Tuesday, October 07, 2008
Falwell, Cathryn. Word Wizard. Clarion Books, 1998. Gr K-3
Get set for an anagram adventure! With her magic spoon, Anna makes letters tumble and scramble as she and young Zack set out to discover the amazing power of words.
ACTIVITY: Spell these words backwards and see what you get. Choose one of the words and illustrate both spellings. EX: star spelled backwards=rats. Try: pals, step, pat, gum,
 
Godwin, Laura. Little White Dog. Illus. by Dan Yaccarino. Hyperion, 1998. Gr PreK-2
A visual literacy tour where the reader must find Little White Dog and his friends, Little Blue Bird, Little Green Bug, Little Brown Horse, Little Yellow Chick and Little Black Cat.
ACTIVITY: Create a picture with a hidden object. Challenge friends to find it.
 
Johnson, Lindsay Lee. Hurricane Henrietta. Illus. by Wally Neibart. Dial 1998. Gr K-3
Henrietta's hair is so long that kids play in it, a guinea pig gets lost in it and a hurricane twists it until it rains eggplants and rutabagas. Her mother wars her that at camp, birds and squirrels will nest in it. But Henrietta is determined to stay famous for something she has never done....cut her hair!
ACTIVITY: Evaluate: Reasons to have long hair. Reasons not to have long hair. Try for an equal number of reasons for each.
 
Kahn, Rukhsana. The Roses in My Carpets. Illus. by Ronald Himler. Holiday House, 1998. Gr 2-6
An Afghanistan boy lives in a mud hut, hauls water, goes hungry in a refugee camp but in his beautiful carpets he weaves another world.
ACTIVITY: Find Afghanistan on a map. Search the newspaper for news from that country.Create a carpet design on paper that would show the kind of future world you want to live in.
 
Krupinski, Loretta. Best Friends. Hyperion, 1998. Gr 2-4
In the Kansas wilderness of the 1870s Charlotte makes friends with the Indian girl, Lily. When she learns that the soldiers plan to drive Lily and her tribe from their home to a reservation, Charlotte and her mother devise a plan to save the tribe.
ACTIVITY: Describe the Kansas prairie using this pattern:
Line 1 One word for the title
Line 2 Two words that describe the title
Line 3 Three words that show action
Line 4 Four words that show feeling
Example:

Valley
Sinking, Sloping
Earth's expression of time
Wrinkle

 
Roth, Susan L. Cinnamon's Day Out. A Gerbil Adventure. Dial, 1998. Gr Pre K-2
A baby gerbil escapes from its cage and climbs a mountain (top of its cage),crosses a street (counter), sees a wolf (straw dog),goes to a pond (bowl of water) and has other adventures before being returned to its cage.
ACTIVITY: List the things gerbil did (ex: climbed a mountain, rode on a train) Choose two and sing then In a London Bridge song.
EX: Little gerbil climbed a mountain, climbed a mountain, climbed a mountain. Little gerbil climbed a mountain AND rode on a train.
 
Rylant, Cynthia. The Bird House. Illus. by Barry Moser, Blue Sky/Scholastic, 1998. Gr 1-3
A homeless girl watches day after day as birds surround the old woman's house by the river. Then one day, without warning, the birds take flight and change the girl's life forever.
ACTIVITY: Summarize the tale as an acrostic using the letters in the title.
 
Shannon, Margaret. Gullible's Troubles. Houghton Mifflin, 1998. K-3
Gullible Guineapig will believe almost anything you tell him...that eating carrots will make you invisible and that there are monsters in the basement
ACTIVITY:Fool your friends. Think of three facts about yourself and make up three things that aren't true.Create a Fact & Fiction Book About Me. Make a statement on one page and tell why it is true or not true on the next page.