Last night we pulled a book off the shelf that we haven’t read in awhile – Mammalabilia by Douglas Florian. It was a favorite of E’s and she was excited to read it again. F likes to choose every book by herself (big surprise), and if we selected something first she wasn’t interested. I finally instituted a rule that the reading parent gets once choice – and as soon as a book is opened she’s all ears.
The book features paintings and poems about various mammals.
My howl is throaty
I love a vowel
for I am coyooooote
The poems are so much fun to read – and oftentimes the text itself mimics the shape of a particular animal, or it enhances the reading of the poem, as in the example above where the o’s move up and then down again to simulate the howling. The paintings of the various animals are fantastic – one of my favorites is of the mule. His poem about the stubbornness of the animal is reflected in the subtle shift from mule legs to tree trunks. You almost miss it, except for the woodpecker that has taken up residence on one of them.
Some of our best reading nights are the ones that include poetry. If you are looking to increase the poetry books on your own bookshelves then I would recommend starting with this one. It’s perfect for ages 3-5 – they will delight in the various illustrations and enjoy listening to you read these aloud. Older kids will get the humor even more, and will most likely memorize some of them to recite again – they are just that fun. If you’ve read this, please let me know your favorite animal. It has taken great restraint not to retype them all here…
Oh, how I love their prints and notecards and flashcard sets, but I love the various collective nouns almost as much as the artwork.
Now it’s all collected into this compendium – full of various collective nouns arranged alphabetically, and illustrated with striking silhouettes and full page / full color prints like the one above.
Find these titles at your favorite local independent bookstore. Happy reading!