March 15, 2015

Hungry for Math: Poems to Munch On

by Kari-Lynn Winters and Lori Sherritt-Fleming
Illustrated by Peggy Collins
Fitzhenry & Whiteside
32 pp.
Ages 5-8
January, 2015

Teachers and parents will always be clamouring for new and innovative ways to introduce math concepts, and Hungry for Math: Poems to Munch On will surely work.  But forget the classroom and math instruction, or at least put them aside temporarily, and enjoy the rhyme and reason of the verses within and the varied illustrations of dragons, foxes, clockworks and race cars to add the jauntiness that numbers and operations and such can be.

You know that between the dramatic flare of Kari-Lynn Winters and the Tickle Trunk Players founder, Lori Sherritt-Fleming, Hungry for Math: Poems to Munch On has that special something to add spice to early math literacy learnings.  From unique poems like The Balanced Bee with its zen-like insect, the banging of the drum in Patterns Rock! and The Spendosaur in which a dinosaur goes a little crazy spending his coins in a candy store, the math lessons are neither obvious nor necessary to appreciate the silliness of the rhymes.
The Balanced Bee

Three circles, tall not wide.
Six legs – three per side.
Two plus two wings, on its back.
Bands of yellow, white, and black.
Compound eyes to spy the view.
Antennae, not one – always two.
Now fold your paper.
It's plain to see.
Bees are balanced.
It's symmetry! (pg. 5)

Even a poem like Move Around The Clock, that borrows from nursery rhyme Hickory Dickory Dock, takes on a unique flair with an active mouse in a dress changing her movements with the time amongst the clockwork gears.

Whether you want your child to count the five groups of ten fire-breathing creatures in Rot-TEN Dragons or the abundance of heart-shaped treats (which look very familiar) shelled out amongst the cats in That Kitty Counts is irrelevant. Little ones will want to count the assortment of delectables, determine the banana leaves needed to cover the treasure and learn to skip count in 2s or 5s, especially with Peggy Collins' fun characters, human and non, to accompany them along the way.  Kids won't even know they're learning. That adds up to a book full of promise.

1 comment:

  1. Fabulous review of a great book for the little ones!!