Thursday, January 24, 2008

Comets, Stars, the Moon, and Mars: Space Poems and Paintings

Florian, Douglas. 2007. COMETS, STARS, THE MOON, AND MARS: SPACE POEMS AND PAINTINGS. San Diego: Harcourt. ISBN 9780152053727 [Suggested Grade Levels K-3]

The paintings are glorious in the latest outing by Douglas Florian. The color palette is mostly blue and oranges, but all colors get a share in this dazzling look at outer space. The double-page paintings are done with goache, collage, and rubber stamps on brown paper bags. There are also dye-cuts to keep up interest and keep the pages turning. The effect is stellar.

These twenty poems are very light and humorous and easily consumed. In “The Sun” he writes: “Ninety-three million miles from Earth. / Nearly a million miles in girth. / 4.6 billion years old. / Core eight times as dense as gold. / Here and there a dark sunspot. / And did you know. . .the sun is hot?” Although silly, the information contained in these poems about planets and space is accurate. Also there is a “Galactic Glossary” in the back that provides more straight forward definitions to the twenty interplanetary terms. A bibliography is also included. It’s Douglas Florian at his best.

Invite students to read and memorize the poems, ensuring that all verses are memorized. Then have your students present their poems to younger students who are studying space. Ask the younger students to listen to see if the information is accurate or not.

Other poetry ooks by the same author:
Florian, Douglas. MAMMALABILIA: POEMS AND PAINTINGS. ISBN 9780152050245
Florian, Douglas. IN THE SWIM: POEMS AND PAINTINGS. ISBN 9780152024376

By Cay Geisler

No comments: