Two books launch the Asian Arts and Crafts for Creative Kids series: Origami by Michael LaFosse, and Haiku by Patricia Donegan. The first title begins with an introduction with suggestions and sources for finding good origami paper, as well as a brief synopsis of terms, techniques and symbols, then demonstrates over one dozen origami projects. Haiku offers a history of the Japanese poetic form and numerous tools to get young poets writing their own. Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Gr 4-6-These guides offer several simple projects laced together with instructions that are reinforced through repetition. Urging young poets to focus more on characteristic elements, topics, and spirit than on syllable counts, Donegan demonstrates five ways of creating haiku, both as solitary and group efforts. Her many examples range from Matsuo Basho's famous frog to a modern Canadian youngster's "small green growing things/in my old dirty locker/on my ham sandwich." Reproductions of Japanese artwork and children's paintings appear throughout, and generous lists of Web sites, magazines, and organizations are appended. LaFosse's 15 paper models, arranged in order of difficulty from an accordion-folded fan to the traditional crane, include single-piece and modular designs presented through clear, standard-symbol, step-by-step diagrams. Photos of the finished projects are included. Any connection with Asian culture in these titles is limited to occasional references to holiday customs or like snippets. Both contain slightly awkward, strictly decorative illustrations. Still, the books make inviting choices, either for thematic classroom units or for children looking for new ways to express their creativity.-John Peters, New York Public Library Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.