Wednesday, August 21, 2013

New Poetry Books for a New Year, part 2

The Pet Project: Cute and Cuddly Vicious Verses
by Lisa Wheeler
illustrated by Zachariah OHora
Atheneum Books for Young Readers (April 2, 2013)
review copy purchased for my classroom library

The character in this book wants a pet, but her parents, "...very scientific folk..." insist that she does research according to a scientific plan -- formulating a query, collecting data and observations, and presenting her results.

Our character has a research notebook, seen at the bottom of the page when she takes her study " the field." Her first destination is the farm. Her poems about the cow, chicken, pony, dove, and sheep reveal the reasons none of those will be her pet-of-choice.

"The farm was interesting, and yet,
I still have failed to find a pet.
Sure of what I have to do,
I'll take my research to the

After her zoological expedition, she goes to the woodland, does a "home study," a "controlled environments" study, notes some "inconclusive investigations" and finally comes to a conclusion about the kind of pets that are perfect for an owner like her, someone who is definitely not into the maintenance a pet requires, and rather quite forgetful, as well. Her choice?

"...They need no care.
They need no fuss.
They're not aware
that they're in us.

These beasties who are hard to find
are everywhere...and they're all

I go to Mom and Dad with hope:

"May I have a..."

  Can you guess?*

Such a fun book. You will want it for your poetry collection, for your science class, and for your persuasive writing unit!



  1. Sounds lovely, gonna recommend it to a librarian I know.

  2. The cover illustration is worth the purchase alone! Sounds great and I think it will spark inquiry in my first graders. Thanks.

    First in Maine

  3. Sounds fun! We loved her book wool gathering. Perhaps it can be used in a math unit about data collection.


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