Good Sports: Rhymes about Running, Jumping, Throwing, and More

Good Sports: Rhymes about Running, Jumping, Throwing, and More

2.6 3
by Jack Prelutsky
     
 

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Exhilarating, all-new, kid-friendly verses capture the range of emotions, from the thrill of winning to the agony of losing to the sheer joy of participating.  Jack Prelutsky, America's first children's poet laureate and a virtuoso at making poetry fun for the elementary school crowd, includes in this collection poems about the popular sports that kids

Overview

Exhilarating, all-new, kid-friendly verses capture the range of emotions, from the thrill of winning to the agony of losing to the sheer joy of participating.  Jack Prelutsky, America's first children's poet laureate and a virtuoso at making poetry fun for the elementary school crowd, includes in this collection poems about the popular sports that kids play—team sports, individual sports, and even backyard frisbee tossing. The bouncy rhymes beg to be read aloud and lend themselves to easy recitation. Caldecott Medal Winner Chris Raschka's stylized watercolors are a blaze of color and motion. An ALA-ALSC Notable Children's Book of 2007, this exuberant picture book proves that poetry can be as much fun as playing games!

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
Starred Review, Booklist, March 2007:
"Prelutsky's smoothly rhyming quatrains, ideal for recitation, cover team sports . . . as well as several individual ones,and celebrate disciplined efforts as exuberantly as noncompetitive play."

Publishers Weekly

Despite Raschka's (The Hello, Goodbye Window) action-filled illustrations, this collection of sports poems lacks pizzazz. The untitled verses brim with fairly obvious sports commentator clichés. A basketball player hopes to "soar above the rim," and a runner "put[s] a burst of speed on." Conversely, one pair of poems humorously contrasts the highs and lows of life on the field: a football player scores a touchdown and says, "I love football. Football's fun," but on the opposite page, Raschka pictures the same player fumbling the ball under a heap of opponents: "I don't like this game,/ Not a bit, not at all." The quick-dash brushstrokes imitate the athletes' movements. A gymnast's elongated leg stretches over her body on the balance beam and emulates the girl moving from one position to another. A baseball heading for a determined hitter trails a streak of color like a comet in the sky. Simulating the stop-animation film seen in television coverage of the Olympics, eight progressive versions of a basketball player depict his eventual delight at dunking the ball. Poems about the same sport are not grouped together but sprinkled throughout the book, and the effect is akin to clicking a TV remote through the sports channels. Although the first-person poems narrated by young athletes may disappoint readers, Raschka's high-speed artwork offers a whirl of color and breathless activity. Ages 8-up (Mar.)

Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Children's Literature - Kathleen Karr
Children's Poet Laureate Jack Prelutsky and Caldecott Medal winner Chris Raschka collaborate on this paean to sports for kids. As its subtitle points out, this effort is about physical action. The "more" encompasses sturdy little poems about baseball, soccer, gymnastics, basketball, and more. Prelutsky strives mightily for worthy rhymes not only about the games themselves, but the concept of sportsmanship. As is his wont, he shines best in wry commentary. Only consider: "I had to slide into the plate,/It was my only chance./Though if I hadn't slid, then I/Would not have lost my pants." Or, "My dunk will be spectacular—/The greatest of them all./When I grow three feet taller,/I will dunk this basketball." Raschka's watercolor-and-ink drawings slip and slide right along with the poems. Putrid green and orange signify chances forever lost; broad swooshes of color imitate action; nebulous blob-like figures scrimmage with a will. Sports-oriented youngsters should eat up the results.
School Library Journal
K-Gr 5
Prelutsky's gleeful verses team up with Raschka's economic, energetic, and humorous illustrations to create a winning book. Seventeen brief, untitled poems, mostly presented across eye-catching spreads, describe the experiences and emotions of young athletes as they participate in a variety of physical pursuits, including soccer, football, ice skating, and gymnastics. The narrators display varying levels of expertise, and although they may not excel at their endeavors, they are all at heart "good sports," dedicated to trying their best. A swimmer daydreams about being an orca and then good-naturedly admits, "I swim like a fish/That's been sick for a spell./I flop in the pool,/And I flounder around./My friends laugh and say/I should stay on the ground," before vowing to stick with the activity. The short, accessible verses are easy to memorize ("I'll swing at that ball,/And I'll smack it so hard,/I'll send that ball sailing/Clean out of the yard") and are perfect for classroom poem-a-day programs. They can also be used to introduce rhythm, rhyme scheme, punning, and alliteration. The expressive watercolors-with pen-and-ink lines adding a hint of definition-affectionately capture each character, depicting one youngster's chubby cheeks, another's curlicued hair, and another's hopeful eyes as he swings a bat at a ball. Readers will relate to and root for these children at play.
—Teresa PfeiferCopyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
True to the subtitle, this collection offers a variety of untitled poems that capture kids' sports thrills of victory and agonies of defeat. A wry understanding of the nature of children's athletics informs the whole, from the kid who strikes out swinging and the one who observes, "Baseball is fun / But it gives me the blues / To score ninety-four / And still manage to lose," to the agile inline skater and the pals just tossing a Frisbee for fun, "Though we aren't good at all." Both types of activities and successes (or lack thereof) are thrown together in a happy, well-rounded jumble, so the nothin'-but-net free throw is bookended by a gymnast aspiring to make the team, and an avid swimmer. Raschka's loose watercolors are characteristically full of movement, swift, broad brushstrokes limning kids, balls and even the air in motion. The players swing, leap, balance and throw with happy abandon, in a visually harmonious complement to the poems. Collections of sports poetry are legion in children's literature, but there's room on the shelves for this little gem. (Picture book/poetry. 8-12)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780375865589
Publisher:
Random House Children's Books
Publication date:
02/08/2011
Pages:
40
Sales rank:
498,343
Product dimensions:
10.80(w) x 8.30(h) x 0.30(d)
Age Range:
6 - 9 Years

Meet the Author

JACK PRELUTSKY has written more than 40 books of kid-friendly poems and compiled 10 anthologies of poetry. He was named our nation's first children's poet laureate in 2006.

CHRIS RASCHKA was awarded the 2006 Caldecott Medal for The Hello, Goodbye Window by Norton Juster and has written and illustrated Yo! Yes?, a Caldecott Honor Book.

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Good Sports: Rhymes about Running, Jumping, Throwing, and More 2.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I did like it but it was good for my sister
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It was to short but good
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It is very good