Crunch and Crack, Oink and Whack!: An Onomatopoeia Story

Lerner. Mar. 2019. 32p. Tr $26.95. ISBN 9781467787994.
Gr 2-4–This title depicts a group of students on a schoolwide scavenger hunt for examples of onomatopoeia, defined as “the naming of a thing or an action by imitating or mimicking its sound, as in BEEP, MOO, and SPLASH.” The text incorporates an unusual rhyme scheme as well as many examples of onomatopoeia: animal and nature sounds as students explore nearby farmland; mechanical sounds from a workshop; and sounds from a band class, gymnasium, and science lab. The examples in the text are emphasized with color and a bold, stylized font. The back matter includes lists of examples as well as suggestions for further reading. While the story of the word hunt is secondary to the exploration of the sounds of words, the illustrations use pencil with digital coloring and depict both students and teachers. The chaos of each scene reinforces the noisy nature of the text and includes humorous details such as a leaky sink in the restroom and explosions in the science room. The characters are expressive and showcase dynamic movement.
VERDICT The emphasis placed on the sounds of words and the rhythm of the language is naturally suited for reading aloud, while the content works well for elementary students learning about the parts of speech.

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