science poems

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Sue Fliess's newest picture book, The Bug Book, starts with text that really reflects the best way to teach science to kids:

"Grab a bucket. Check your guide.
Let's go find some bugs outside!

As you can see from the quote, the text is written in lively rhyming verse. The illustrations are bright, colorful photographs from stock sources. See our full review at our sister blog, Wrapped in Foil.

You can also check out the official trailer:

Insect Poetry Activity:

  1. Download/print some colorful bug photographs.

buckeye-butterfly-dbg-4(Feel free to use images from our Bug of the Week category for this educational project).

2. Encourage children to write their own insect poems inspired by the photographs. Younger children can create descriptive word lists. Acrostic poems (spelling a word with the first letters of each line) can give hesitant poets a comfortable structure to get them stated.

Active
Numerous
Tiny
Soldiers

3. Gather the poems into a small book or display them on a wall.

Related:

Check out our recent series of insect science lessons for kids.

Insect Science Investigations

See our growing list of children's poetry books with an insect theme.

poetry-books-about-insects-for-children

Age Range: 3 - 5 years
Publisher: Grosset & Dunlap (February 23, 2016)
ISBN-10: 044848935X
ISBN-13: 978-0448489353

Disclosure: This book was provided by the publisher for review purposes. Also, I am an affiliate with Amazon so I can provide you with cover images and links to more information about books and products. As you probably are aware, if you click through the highlighted title or cover links and purchase a product, I will receive a very small commission, at no extra cost to you. Any proceeds help defray the costs of hosting and maintaining this website.

Looking for more children’s nonfiction books? Try the Nonfiction Monday blog.

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Today we have a new resource for sharing science poems with children.

Science poems? Yes, like "Comet Hunter" by Holly Thompson, which she reads in this video:
 

 

The resource is The Poetry Friday Anthology for Science (Teacher's Edition): Poems for the School Year Integrating Science, Reading, and Language Arts by Sylvia Vardell and Janet Wong.

 

The K-5 Teacher Edition has a poem for each week of a school year (36 weeks) for Kindergarten through 5th grade, for a total of 218 science poems by 78 poets. To help extend the poems, every one is accompanied by a 5-step mini-lesson with connections to the new Next Generation Science Standards.

student-editions

Separate student editions are also available for each grade that have 36 poems (plus a few bonus poems), each on a separate page and illustrated with line drawings.

Why combine poetry with science? As the authors suggest, a poem can be read and enjoyed by children with a range of reading abilities. The use of sensory language and vivid imagery is likely to bring a new depth to scientific concepts. Also, poems that are read aloud and savored can make science topics more memorable.

One benefit that the authors don't mention is that children who regularly hear poetry on different topics just might be inspired to write poetry of their own. I know I was:

Milkweed Beetle
By Roberta Gibson

Gently touch a milkweed beetle,
And it will give a squeak.
Bet you didn’t know an insect
So very small could speak.

All in all, The Poetry Friday Anthology for Science makes sharing science poems on a regular basis throughout the year a breeze. Aren't you ready to see where that could take your children?

Paperback: 308 pages
Publisher: Pomelo Books (February 28, 2014)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1937057976
ISBN-13: 978-1937057978

Do you write poetry for children or interested in reading more? Poetry Friday is an ongoing blogging digest by a group who share their poetry on Fridays. You can find a list of upcoming roundups and archives of past years at the Kidlitosphere Central website.

Disclosures: This book was provided for review by the publisher. Also, I am an affiliate for Amazon, and if you click through the linked titles or ads and make a purchase, I will receive a small commission at no extra charge to you. Proceeds will be used to maintain this self-hosted blog.

If you are interested in children's nonfiction, you might want to visit the Nonfiction Monday blog and see what other new books bloggers have found.

nonfictionmonday

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It's STEM Friday and we're hosting this week. It's time to soar with STEM poetry books about astronomy.

Note:  Title links take you to more information at Amazon.

Blast-off-poems

When my son was small, we discovered Blast Off: Poems About Space (I Can Read), compiled by Lee Bennett Hopkins and illustrated by Melissa Sweet (1995). The book features the poem "Children of the Sun" by Brod Bagert, which starts:

"Mercury's small
Almost nothing at all.
Venus is bright and near…"

It was a wonderful way to memorize both a poem and the names of the planets. Of course it is slightly out of date because Pluto is no longer a planet, but many of the others in the collection are still ring true and clear.

As of today, the poems from Blast Off are available for reading on the Internet.

out-of-this-world

Out of This World: Poems and Facts about Space by Amy Sklansky and illustrated by Stacey Schuett (2012) really lives up to its name. The poems are fun, creative and absolutely perfect for kids. For example, in the poem "Zero Gravity" some of the lines are flipped over. How creative!

Each poem is accompanied by a black sidebar labeled "Fact" that explains scientific concepts or fills in the history of events that are mentioned.

comets-stars-moon-mars

You could teach a robust unit on STEM poetry with just Douglas Florian's fabulous books. Comets, Stars, the Moon, and Mars: Space Poems and Paintings (2007) is probably the one most geared to older children.

Personally, I love Florian's playful style and fun-filled illustrations. In this book there are cut out circles in some of the pages that move images from one page to another, some playing with changes in scale while doing so. For example, the planet Mercury is a cut out that reveals the much larger Venus on the page behind it.

 

and-then-there-were

And Then There Were Eight: Poems about Space (Poetry) (A+ Books: Poetry) by Laura Purdie Salas (2008) is fresh and lively. Salas is devoted to her craft, and presents poems in different forms, and then explains each in the backmatter. This book would work well for a unit on poetry as it does for a unit on space.

 

roaring-rockets

Although not a collection of poems, the rhyming couplets in Roaring Rockets (Amazing Machines) by Tony Mitton and Ant Parker (2000) are perfect for toddlers and preschoolers.

Are you ready to try science poetry now? Do you have any favorite poetry books about space that aren't on the list? We'd love to hear about them!

Related activity: Exploring Space Without a Spacesuit.

Come visit the STEM Friday blog each week to find more great Science, Technology, Engineering and Math books.