In the U.K. (“England” to Americans) it’s National Poetry Day–a holiday or cause, depending on your point of view, that I wholeheartedly support! Children, not yet encumbered with what I think of as the “math of poetry”–the rules, the ways, the whys and hows of it–enjoy rhymes whether we call them poetry, song lyrics or even raps!
Today I’m presenting some of my favorite children’s poetry books. Won’t you take time out today to read–or listen–to at least one poem? Even just recite one you may no if only to yourself.
I have a poetry loving child–we enjoyed this one many times. I like to give it as a special baby gift to parents I know are book lovers. Robert Frost’s Stopping By Woods on a Snowy Evening.
This volume has both the poet’s early biography and one of his poems–presented in both English and Spanish. To Go Singing Through the World: The Childhood of Pablo Neruda.
I wish I’d found this book in the summer of 2004 when my son played his only season of baseball. We read this poem from my copy of a read classics to your kid collection so many times! This is a Caldecott Honor book, too, so it’s lovely! Casey at the Bat.
Some may get twitchy and actually take offense (none intended) at me calling Psalms mere poems, but so many children today receive absolutely no exposure to the Bible–let alone to the beauty of the King James Version of the Psalms, that I must include this. Psalm 23.
This is the classic of classics when it comes to poetry for children! First my brother and I, then his children, then my children, all enjoyed these poems from my Dad’s childhood volume (not shown). I really should find it (its in a box) so his great-grandchildren (now as old as 2nd grade!) can enjoy it! A Child’s Garden of Verses.
This tremendous series, Poetry for Young People, is fabulous. The pictures, the poems–all of it. Tremendous. Superb books. Poetry for Young People (various authors)–link is to Maya Angelou (not included in the illustration above).
Lyrics as Poetry
Dolly Parton’s classic song is vividly brought to life in this little book, Coat of Many Colors.
I remember learning to sing this song in first grade! This version has amazing illustration to introduce our country to young people thru the classic folk song by Woody Guthrie. This Land is Your Land.
Are you doing anything special for National Poetry Day? I’m going to make time to listen to Prince Charles read Seamus Heaney’s Poem the Shipping Forecast.
You can listen to Charles, too, on the video below.