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Here at Growing With Science we love both creepy crawlies and science poems, so imagine our excitement when we discovered the new middle grade book, Leaf Litter Critters by Leslie Bulion and illustrated by Robert Meganck.

Each two-page spread in the book features a vocabulary-rich science poem about the leaf litter ecosystem, as well as a "Science Note," which is a paragraph or two of background information to support the poem.

For example, here's one of the poems (most are much longer):

Rove Beetle

Velcro-tongued predator
snags maggots, mites, snails, and slugs
soil pest control
requires a flexible
appetite and abdomen

The accompanying "Science Note" explains how rove beetles fit into the "brown food web," and also how their abdomens differ from those of most beetles.

The digital illustrations add a fun element. They range from somewhat realistic to full-blown cartoon.

Leaf Litter Critters is a serious text that might just entice some readers who prefer fiction to explore a less-than-glamorous ecosystem. It's also perfect for those who enjoy their poetry on the sci-ency side.

Don't forget our giveaway for the picture book What Do They Do With All That Poo? ends tomorrow! The giveaway is now closed.

Age Range: 8 - 12 years
Publisher: Peachtree Publishers (March 1, 2018)
ISBN-10: 156145950X
ISBN-13: 978-1561459506

Related Activity Suggestions:

See our previous compost science projects for kids post.

Want more information? Visit our growing list of children's books about composting and decomposition at Science Books for Kids.

Disclosure: This book was provided by our local library. 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 link 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.

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

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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