Sunday, April 29, 2012

Kids Books A to Z: P is for Prelutsky

Jack Prelutsky is one of the funniest writers I remember from my childhood. For Christmas when I was about 7 years old, my aunt bought me The New Kid on the Block, a collection of his humorous poetry for kids. I read that book over and over again. At first it was hard for me to wrap my head around a style of poetry that was different from Shel Silverstein. To that point, he was the only children's poet I knew. Prelutsky was different. He was grosser, which made it even more amusing, and didn't have deep thoughts in the same way. I still loved him.

I remember having to memorize some of his poetry for school. I did "Homework, Oh Homework" for a recitation. We also used to try to memorize poems such as "Gussie's Greasy Spoon" and "Ebeneezer Bleezer's Ice Cream."

Prelutsky has written over 50 collections of poems for children. I have read through many of them with my students and on my own. I will forever be partial to New Kid on the Block, though, simply because it was my first.

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