Books, Reviews

Poetic Patterns in Snow and More

Dusting and bringing forward another Magical Monday of a few years ago today, with a makeover and updates, as always. This time a peppery pattern gets updated to patterns in snow and more. And as I wrote the blog post title, I thought about the wondrous patterns we see in the snow and in other things around us and in life itself. And also mused on how poetic and inspiring they can be!

What about you? Where have you seen cool patterns recently?

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Seeing Patterns

We have a natural tendency to see patterns even where and when none exist. This tendency has a name – patternicity. Like looking up at the clouds and seeing the cow flying over the moon (a recent viral meme actually). Or finding connections between unrelated objects for fun. Like finding that you are seeing more/only white cars on the road on a specific day, or glancing up at the clock and seeing it is always 20 minutes past the hour when you do look at the time there.

While patternicity is natural usually, when we fixate on it, or start making unwise decisions using these patterns, we need to pause, to reflect, and rethink our need for patternicity!

So go ahead and see that man in the moon, and find those fairy people on tree barks. But stop there…. and when you feel you are wearing that lucky t-shirt without washing it for the umpteenth game so your team can win, think again… Go ahead and buy a new t-shirt and challenge your own suppositions and biases and look for other fun patterns instead!

(references: Psychology Today/PsychCentral)

Poetic Patterns in Snow and More

The first two books (Pepper/Emily Dickinson poetry) are from the original post – dated January 24, 2017).. the remaining three books are more recent reads that were awaiting a review, so…

A Pattern for Pepper

A Pattern for Pepper by Julie Kraulis

Description: Pepper is getting a dress made for a special occasion. It’s the first dress that has ever been made just for her, and she wants it to be perfect. But what pattern is right for her?

My thoughts

Pepper is totally adorable and very particular, as you will learn when you read the book. This book while taking through the ritual of a little girl picking out fabrics and patterns for her first custom made dress for a special occasion, also teaches you a lot. Who knew paisley was actually a pattern named after a place in Switzerland? I didn’t and I learned that from here along with facts about many more interesting patterns. As Pepper works with Mr.Taylor (the tailor!) to find the perfect pattern for herself, we are treated to learning the patterns, the process of dressmaking (in the simplest terms), and of how kids might make choices (which is pure fun!).

While this book might not be for everyone, it is a book that will be enjoyed by many. The illustrations complement the book perfectly!

Rating: B / Reading Level: 5 – 9 years (though my then 10 year old who loves to craft/sew/knit also enjoyed it – mainly for the information) / Reread Level: 3/5

Disclaimer: Thank you to NetGalley for the digital ARC of the book

Poetry for Kids: Emily Dickinson

Poetry for Kids: Emily Dickinson by Emily Dickinson, Susan Snively (Edited by), Christine Davenier (Illustrated by)

Description: Let your children discover the works of poet Emily Dickinson. Susan Snively has carefully chosen 35 poems, and each poem is beautifully illustrated by Christine Davenier and thoroughly explained by an expert.

My Thoughts

The selection of poems, their arrangement in the book by seasons(starting with summer, and ending with spring), the fluidly whimsical accompanying watercolor illustrations, and the wonderful notes at the end that give a brief description of what Emily was thinking of as she wrote each poem.

The introduction is a short yet informative biography of the poet. Poems include word definitions when necessary (helpful when reading to younger kids; and some words to better understand as used in the poem) and this really will be useful for readers. The selection of poems covers a wide range of emotions from the sweetly whimsical to the slightly morbid dealing with death, making it even more wonderful.

This book is like a great starter kit to introduce kids to poetry in general, and to specific poets. Looking forward to the series.

In the words of Emily herself,

‘There is no frigate like a book
To take us lands away,
Nor any coursers like a page
Of prancing poetry.’

Rating: A+ / Reading Level: Read to younger kids; read with everyone else 🙂 / Reread Level: 5/5
Disclaimer: Thank you to Edelweiss for the digital ARC of the book

The Power of Snow

The Power of Snow by Bob Raczka and Illustrated by Bryony Clarkson (Juvenile Nonfiction / Mathematics | 5 – 10 years, and up)

Description: On a snowy day . . . Two flakes play. Four flakes sashay. Eight flakes twirl. Sixteen flakes swirl. At this rate, how long will it take to surpass 100 snowflakes? How about 1,000? Or even 16,000?

My Quick Thoughts

This tiny book packs a powerful punch – of fun, numbers, and rhyming – all in one! Raczka and Clarkson have come together to teach the concept of exponents and growth using visuals and simple rhyming text. We start with two snowflakes that over the pages of this book grow to 16,384! And what is cool is that each page features exactly that many snowflakes in the artwork!!

So much to do (counting and more) and learn and enjoy here.

Disclaimer: Thank you to NetGalley for the digital ARC of the book

Lunar New Year

Lunar New Year by Natasha Yim with art by Jingting Wang (Multicultural Stories | 5 – 7 years and up)

Description: This book captures the magic of the celebration by exploring how Ling and her family enjoy the biggest Chinese festival of the year.

My Quick Thoughts

Natasha Yim’s narrative takes us through the life of Ling’s family as they gear up for the Lunar New Year. We learn about the preparation, the rituals, the activities, and more as we follow the family members getting ready for the festival and enjoying it. Jingting Wang’s vibrant and detailed illustrations make the perfect accompaniment to the story and offer a lot to delight readers.

I love the additional pages of riddles, crafts, recipes, as well as the author and illustrator notes towards the end of the book. A great book to learn about this festival

Disclaimer: Thank you to NetGalley/Edelweiss for the digital ARC of the book

Poetry Prompts

Poetry Prompts: All sorts of ways to start a poem by Joseph Coelho with illustrations by Georgie Birkett, Amanda Quartey, Grasya Oliyko, and Viola Wang (Poetry/Creative Writing/Children’s Books | 7 – 9 years, and up)

Description: A compendium of poetry prompts from Joseph Coelho (Children’s Laureate 2022-2024). Each fun and engaging prompt for writing a poem helps children discover how to write poems and then read them out loud. This is a book to build confidence and literacy skills through channeling children’s imaginations. 

My Quick Thoughts

I love Joseph Coelho’s books, and so of course, had to check out this one when I saw it. It is filled with delightful prompts and simply adorable artwork. Each prompt comes with an example and a ‘power-up’ to the prompt (kind of like a bonus idea). For example, one of the prompts is to write an abcderian poem and the power-up is to add alliteration to the lines!

A great gift idea for budding young writers of any age. Why not pair it with a fun or elegant journal and pens/pencils to complete the gift?

Disclaimer: Thank you to Edelweiss for the digital ARC of the book

Related Reads and More

I am also currently finishing up my reading assignments (but totally enjoying this one) for the Cybils awards where I am a round 2 judge for the nonfiction category. You can check out the list of finalists here for yourself and read along with me. I will post my thoughts on most of these books after the winners are announced (February 14th). Except for two of them, which I had already reviewed earlier last year 🙂

And Now, the End of This Post

Dear reader, as always, I welcome your thoughts and suggestions and recommendations.

Linking up to IMWAYR over at Unleashing Readers

2 thoughts on “Poetic Patterns in Snow and More

  1. I checked out that site too. What I saw displayed only an obviously fake e-mail contact address for the site. If this is a legitimate program, what's the URL you used to sign up?

    I like to link to other book reviews, but don't want to endorse anything spammy or discriminatory. So, no links unless/until I'm in this program too.

    1. thanks Priscilla for the update, as i mentioned, has been a while since i created the list and need to clean it up.. i will take it up as an action item sometime this week.. and for that url, need to check my email, as of late, have been mainly reviewing on my blog/goodreads/netgalley/edelweiss…

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