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Giggle Poetry Reading Lessons by Amy Buswell and Bruce Lansky

Source: LibraryThing Early Reviewers
Paperback, 96 pages
On Amazon and on Kobo

Giggle Poetry Reading Lessons by Amy Buswell and Bruce Lansky, illustrated by Stephen Carpenter is a guide for educators and parents who have students in grades 2-5 who struggle with reading and comprehension.  In the introduction, the authors state that no matter how good a remedial program is, it cannot improve readers’ skills if they are disengaged.  Rather than require these struggling students to read text they find boring, why not create a program with texts that students don’t want to put down — the premise of this book.

Using the poems of Bruce Lansky, which Buswell says have been kid tested, she says that her program accompanied by illustrations from Stephen Carpenter enabled 95 percent of students to demonstrate marked improvement in their reading and 90 percent showed gains in comprehension.  There are a number of tips broken down for both teachers and parents to help their child improve their reading fluency.  There is a lesson plan overview and an explanation of how the lesson supports the goals of the Common Core State Standards, which have been adopted in more than 40 states.

A Brave Little Fellow Named Brian (page 16)

A brave little fellow named Brian
went for a ride on a lion.

When Brian got bit,
the lion got hit.

So now it's the lion
who's cryin'.

There are performance tips on each page where the poems are written out and illustrated, because parents and teachers know that younger readers prefer when you can gesture or demonstrate action beyond raising and lowering the pitch of your voice when reading aloud.  Anything to make the poem come alive can help the readers stay engaged.  While this is geared for readers older than my daughter, she and I have been reading along together for some time, and she’s beginning to recognize words in books we’ve read before.  As she continues on her reading and learning, this book will be an excellent supplement to what we already do and what she will begin doing when she gets to kindergarten in a couple of years.

Giggle Poetry Reading Lessons by Amy Buswell and Bruce Lansky, illustrated by Stephen Carpenter has engaging poems that are funny and unexpected, but it also has substantive lessons that can help students overcome not only their fears of reading but other troubles in their lives.  These poems will help them deal with embarrassing situations, other emotions, and situations that surprise them.

About the Authors:

Amy Buswell is a reading specialist who teaches in West Palm Beach, FL. Her entertaining “reading lessons” have dramatically raised the reading skills and scores of the students who attended schools at which she has taught.

Bruce Lansky has edited a number of poetry anthologies (including Rolling in the Aisles, Kids Pick the Funniest Poems, If Kids Ruled the School, A Bad Case of the Giggles, Miles of Smiles, and No More Homework! No More Tests!), and 3 silly songbook anthologies. Lansky created the popular GigglePoetry.com website for children and the PoetryTeachers.com website for teachers. He also created the Girls to the Rescue series, the New Fangled Fairy Tales series, and the Can You Solve the Mysteries series.

Stephen Carpenter is the illustrator who has helped 16 “Giggle Poetry” books come alive with hilarious illustrations. He lives just outside Kansas City with his wife, Becki, and their sheepdog, Lulu.

  • Anna

    Sounds like an interesting way to help kids learn.

  • bermudaonion(Kathy)

    I can how reading poems like that would help kids who struggle to read.

    • I think the techniques are sound. As my daughter is just starting her letter recognition and reading along, I think its a good time to get her thinking about poems and recognizing words.