Earth Verse: Haiku from the Ground Up

illus. by William Grill. 48p. further reading. Candlewick. Feb. 2018. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9780763675127.
Gr 5–8—Poetry meets science in haiku on Earth's geological makeup and seismic activity. Topics include fossils, earthquakes, glaciers, groundwater, minerals, volcanoes, and more. ("Molten magma stew/bubbles out of its hot pot,/chills into hard rock.") The compact poems are accompanied by Grill's broad impressionistic landscapes done in colored pencil and a soft palette of blues, reds, grays, and yellows. Some are full-spread scenes with small indistinct human or animals and other times, spot art accompanies the poems. This is an understated collection that may not initially garner much attention; however, there are numerous uses for this book in classrooms and programs, inviting observation, discussion, and even creative expression from students. Some of the references will be vague or confusing to children, but others are more apparent. Short closing essays define and describe some of the subjects and work as brief introductions. The book concludes with a nicely varied list of children's titles for further reading.
VERDICT A quiet but valuable addition to STEM-related poetry collections, hand to teachers and curious students.

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