I was just reading the Weather Channel’s explanation of why some winter storms are named and others aren’t. Frankly, I don’t get it, but I do know Nemo is happening right outside my window, and I’m expecting our power to go out any minute. When I think of Nemo, I think of a cute little orange fish – not a storm that will keep me inside all weekend. Luckily, I brought home a few new children’s books to read over the weekend so after catching up on Downton Abbey, I pulled out Follow Follow: A Book of Reverso Poems by Marilyn Singer.
I’m going to back up a little….three years ago I discovered Singer’s first book of reversable poems, Mirror Mirror: A Book of Reversable Verse. It’s one of my favorite books and one of the few books I keep a copy of near my desk so that it’s always available if I have a few minutes at the end of a class. The poems, based on fairy tales, are reversable; they can be read either up or down. They work in either direction, but the meanings are quite different. For example, “In the Hood” is narrated by the wolf if you read it one way, and the “mirror” poem is narrated by Red Riding Hood. The beautiful illustrations by Josee Masse are part of the fun. Each side of the page shows a different perspective.
Now there is Follow Follow – another book of reverso poems based on familiar stories. And I need to make room on my “absolutely necessary” shelf for Singer’s new book. It’s as wonderful and beautiful as Mirror Mirror.
One other thing….I took this picture at school yesterday. The sixth grade students are reading Heart of a Samurai by Margi Preus, the 2011 Newbery Honor book based on the true story of Manjiro, a Japanese boy who was rescued by an American whaling ship. Here’s a picture I took during class. They are loving this book, especially all of the details about life in New Bedford, Massachusetts during its heyday as a whaling port.