Tuesday, October 5, 2010
Red Sings from The Treetops: A Year in Colors
Written by Joyce Sidman
Illustrated by Pamela Zagarenski
Poetry can be such a sweet but elusive thing to me. I am not a well-read when it comes to poetry, but each time I read it, I love it! As a reader, I am accustomed to reading quickly; understanding. Poetry makes me slow down, and think a little more; sometimes a lot more. That is what makes it so refreshing and worthwhile. I know this about myself and poetry, and I see the same thing with my children, and so Red Sings from Treetops: A Year in Colorssat waiting in my book pile for a bit before I was ready to slow down enough to read it. When I did--I loved it! LOVE!
The book is what it claims to be: a year in colors. Starting with Spring and ending with Winter you travel through the seasons with colors, and you see them all the while through words as well as pictures. Oh, the art! The art is so amazing, the colors (so fittingly) are so right on, that it makes my heart sing! I adore the colors in this book. The paintings are indeed what caught my daughter on her first run through, she found much to point out and much to talk about, and loved to guess which color was about to be explained in the season through the next poem. We loved this book. As is typical for me, I also love that this book has a lot of rereading potential--more to learn each time, and more for my children to discover as they mature.
Poetry can be an interesting thing for children--my children. All readers are different, inlcuding young ones, and I see this when we are reading poetry as well. Poetry is wide-ranging and so there are types to suit each taste. My children all love funny poems. My children especially love poems with accompanying amazing pictures. But then, my children are also different. The five year-old daughter I read this with is busy, she chatters and moves a lot. Perhaps she is most still typically, when she is reading! But this book's pictures found reason for her to say things, lots of things, while we read. Because of this she missed a lot of words, but she didn't miss an experience. With more readings she will catch more words, more meanings, will ask more questions, and find still more to talk about in the illustrations. When I think of another child of mine, a son, I think at this same age he would have listened and caught more language, as language is his love, maybe missing more of the pictures. All kids are different, all people are different, and there are books and poems to suit us all. Sometimes one may suit most of us, but in different ways. Oh, the joy of reading, and sharing a book with another!
We loved this book, the 2010 Caldecott Winner (I have not mentioned this yet, have I?) I am grateful for the award, because the popularitiy if it made the cover familiar to me. What if I would have missed it? Oh thank goodness I didn't, because we so enjoyed the red singing from the treetops! I hope you do too.