Happy Poetry Friday. I am joining today to share a book of poetry I am currently in love with.I love finding ways to connect informational books with poetry and this week I discovered, as Melissa Stewart would say, the “perfect pair.” I have been sharing poems from Irene Latham’s newest book, Dear Wandering Wildebeests and Other Poems from the Waterhole with my third graders. They were fascinated to learn Irene was inspired to write her poems after viewing wildlife images by Greg du Toit , who took the photographs while submerged in a waterhole. We went on line and were able to locate some of his pictures. The students discussed the pictures taken from the perspective of the waterhole with excitement.
After taking a few minutes to observe and reflect, we returned to the poetry to learn more about the animals du Toit captured in his waterhole photos. Not only were students captivated by the many different styles and poems but also by the small factual information tucked in boxes next to each poem.
In anticipation of reading Deadliest Animals by Melissa Stewart later in the week, we talked about dangers of the waterhole and which animals might also be in this book. Of course there are many! The students were engrossed by the deadly animals discussed in Melissa Stewart’s book and enjoyed comparing some of the information to that found in Irene Latham’s book of waterhole poems. They were even more amazed to think about the bravery of Greg du Toit in the waterhole after learning more about some of the deadly animals he photographs. A perfect pairing for middle grade students!