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Pass It On: African American Poetry

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A beautiful and inspiring collection of some of the best poetry for children by African-American poets, including works by Langston Hughes, Paul Laurence Dunbar, and Gwendolyn Brooks. Vividly captures the joys and discoveries of childhood in the oral tradition central to African-American culture.


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A beautiful and inspiring collection of some of the best poetry for children by African-American poets, including works by Langston Hughes, Paul Laurence Dunbar, and Gwendolyn Brooks. Vividly captures the joys and discoveries of childhood in the oral tradition central to African-American culture.

30 review for Pass It On: African American Poetry

  1. 4 out of 5

    Henessy Tolliver

    This book includes many short poems, that are all wonderful.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Brandy Mcdonald

    Pass It On: African American Poetry for Children written by Wade Hudson is a collection of poetry for children by African-American poets. The book beautifully introduces the what different cultures can bring to literary arts. This book has so many messages and valuable lessons to teach to young readers about African American culture. The topics vary from fun and care-free poems to others telling the story of struggles that African Americans have had to face throughout history. IN light of recent Pass It On: African American Poetry for Children written by Wade Hudson is a collection of poetry for children by African-American poets. The book beautifully introduces the what different cultures can bring to literary arts. This book has so many messages and valuable lessons to teach to young readers about African American culture. The topics vary from fun and care-free poems to others telling the story of struggles that African Americans have had to face throughout history. IN light of recent public event the opening to this collection really touched my heart. The collection begins with a lullaby from an African American mother to her baby. There are different poetry styles with in the collection. The poems are narrative, free verse, or lyrical. It would be great activity to have each student pick a style a write a poem about their own culture or family.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Emily Jane

    Genre: Poetry - Collection of Poetry Awards: N/A Audience: Kindergarten - 5th grade A. This book is a collection of poems that are different poetry styles. The poems are narrative, free verse, or lyrical. B. "To Catch a Fish" by Eloise Greenfield is one of the poems that contains rhyme. An example is the lines "It takes more than a wish to catch a fish". C. Create your own stanza on something you like to go into the poem "The Reason I Like Chocolate" by Nikki Giovanni I like playing with my friends Genre: Poetry - Collection of Poetry Awards: N/A Audience: Kindergarten - 5th grade A. This book is a collection of poems that are different poetry styles. The poems are narrative, free verse, or lyrical. B. "To Catch a Fish" by Eloise Greenfield is one of the poems that contains rhyme. An example is the lines "It takes more than a wish to catch a fish". C. Create your own stanza on something you like to go into the poem "The Reason I Like Chocolate" by Nikki Giovanni I like playing with my friends 'cause I can laugh and run and sing silly songs

  4. 4 out of 5

    Savannah Martin

    This book talks about the African-American culture through poetry. This book was so meaningful due to the fact that it's helping keep the traditions alive for African-Americans. What I like about this book is the simple fact that it introduces us to the works of famous African-American writers. If I were to use this in my class I would focus specifically on the African-American tradition along with slavery, racism, and the civil rights. This book talks about the African-American culture through poetry. This book was so meaningful due to the fact that it's helping keep the traditions alive for African-Americans. What I like about this book is the simple fact that it introduces us to the works of famous African-American writers. If I were to use this in my class I would focus specifically on the African-American tradition along with slavery, racism, and the civil rights.

  5. 4 out of 5

    G.L.

    Powerful poems for all ages!!

  6. 5 out of 5

    Charissa

    This poetry book is REAL. And what I mean by that is, it talks about real problems and situations that happened to African American kids back then; it can count as a historical fiction and present-day, but also informational. At first I didn't think it could be a children's book because of the topics, but that's how children learn. The book starts off with an African mother saying a lullaby to her baby about people want to take him/her. This book ends with one of my favorite poems in the book ab This poetry book is REAL. And what I mean by that is, it talks about real problems and situations that happened to African American kids back then; it can count as a historical fiction and present-day, but also informational. At first I didn't think it could be a children's book because of the topics, but that's how children learn. The book starts off with an African mother saying a lullaby to her baby about people want to take him/her. This book ends with one of my favorite poems in the book about being black. It says that we have never hated black, we just have been embarrassed and mad to think it's not okay to be black, but we have always loved us. This book represents black boys and girls playing, daddy's girls, racism, etc; and it has great pictures to match the words. It is such a nice collection of great poems that accurately represent the culture and encourages being confident in being black.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Lacey

    Pass It On: African- American Poetry for Children was full of great poems for children. This book has so many messages and valuable lessons to teach to young children about the African American culture. The poems vary in topics, some are fun and care-free poems and others tell a story of struggles that African Americans have had to face throughout history. The poems in this book are written by many different authors selected by Wade Hudson and the book is illustrated by Floyd Cooper. The poems i Pass It On: African- American Poetry for Children was full of great poems for children. This book has so many messages and valuable lessons to teach to young children about the African American culture. The poems vary in topics, some are fun and care-free poems and others tell a story of struggles that African Americans have had to face throughout history. The poems in this book are written by many different authors selected by Wade Hudson and the book is illustrated by Floyd Cooper. The poems in Pass It On all vary in elements; they each have different sounds, and images that make them unique from one another. Each author has their own writing style, and Wade Hudson did an excellent job of selecting poems that meet the criteria for poetry. For example the poem Prickled Pickles Don’t Smile does a wonderful job of using sounds to catch the reader’s attention. It uses words that rhyme such as “tickle and pickle”, “goad and toad”, and “courting and reporting”. This makes the poem fun to read and it is catchy, children enjoy and have fun reading poems like this. One of my favorite poems in this book was Wait Little Joe. This poem has a great message behind it that creates insight to raise one’s spirits and also creates imagery that anyone can relate to. The illustration is Joe jumping. This poem talks about Joe trying to jump a ditch and he thinks he can make it but once he jumps he lands in the middle and realizes he is too small to jump the ditch right now. When reading the poem, it is easy to picture what is happening by using your imagination. Also, children and even adults can relate to this poem, because in life we all have things we want to do but have to wait for or work towards to be successful. This is a great poem to teach children not only patience but also that believing in yourself and always trying is very important as well. I believe the entire book is a positive stretch. It tells stories of never giving up and how far the African American culture has become. I also believe this book goes beyond the expectations to meet the criteria and I will be using it again in the future. I highly enjoyed reading this book of poems. If I were to use this in my own classroom it would be appropriate to use for Black History Month. It teaches the students the history of the African American culture and shows them some of the struggles they have been through. The poems can really open the eyes of others and also show the theme of never giving up and accepting and individual for whom they are. It is very important for children to know that they have a meaning in life and to love themselves, and love others. This book does a great job of not only teaching that but also showing the children that they mean a lot to others’ lives as well.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Emma Hunter

    The pictures and poems express African American culture. The whole thing is wonderfully done! Lexile: NP GR: N/A Trait: Ideas

  9. 4 out of 5

    Megan Bernhard

    Pass It On is a collection of African-American Poetry for children selected by Wade Hudson. Each poem is accompanied by an illustration by Floyd Cooper that helps to draw the reader into the message the poems convey. For example the poem entitled Wait Little Joe pictures an enthusiastic depiction of Little Joe attempting to jump the ditch. This is one of the first poems in the collection and I was particularly drawn to it because I think everyone can relate to wanting to participate in an activi Pass It On is a collection of African-American Poetry for children selected by Wade Hudson. Each poem is accompanied by an illustration by Floyd Cooper that helps to draw the reader into the message the poems convey. For example the poem entitled Wait Little Joe pictures an enthusiastic depiction of Little Joe attempting to jump the ditch. This is one of the first poems in the collection and I was particularly drawn to it because I think everyone can relate to wanting to participate in an activity they are not yet ready for. The rest of the collection includes themes of play, family, and friendships. One poem from this collection that is an excellent example of using exact rhymes is The Sand-Man. This poem would be very good to use in the classroom to help teach rhyming patterns. The poem Midway is a good example of insight and images. With the help of the illustration I was able to conclude that this poem is a story being told to a young African-American by an elder, most likely a family member. Through the sound of the poem I am able to envision the events the poem talks about and I really was taken back by the way the author uses historical context to tell her story. I feel that the majority of the poems in this collection can help to deepen our awareness especially those of African-American children's feelings. My heart was truly warmed by the emotion I felt in the voice of these authors. I was touched by Daddy's Little Girl and I would dive deeper into the meaning of this poem by helping my students to understand their importance in the life of others. Another poem that stood out to me was Listen Children and I think this could also be used teach about love and understanding for one another.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Karin

    Short Response: Hudson, Wade. Pass It On: African American Poetry. Scholastic by arrangement with Just Us Books, 1998. 24 p. Gr. Pre-K-3. This book is a collection of poems by 14 of America's most notable African-American poets. Poem themes span time and place, ranging from Africa and African lullabies to simple childish games, slavery, racism, civil rights, and dreaming of the a future in which an African-American becomes the President. The book is a celebration of the African-American cultural e Short Response: Hudson, Wade. Pass It On: African American Poetry. Scholastic by arrangement with Just Us Books, 1998. 24 p. Gr. Pre-K-3. This book is a collection of poems by 14 of America's most notable African-American poets. Poem themes span time and place, ranging from Africa and African lullabies to simple childish games, slavery, racism, civil rights, and dreaming of the a future in which an African-American becomes the President. The book is a celebration of the African-American cultural experience. Artwork in the book includes muted, full-bleed, photo-realistic pastels on two-page spreads. Reader response/classroom connections: This book could be utilized in classrooms from grades Pre-K (perhaps utilizing only some of the simpler poems) and up. This book would be a wonderful addition to a unit focusing on multiculturalism and would, work well in a text set (perhaps with another poetry book illustrated by Floyd Cooper, 'Meet Danitra Brown' by poet Nikki Grimes [who is also featured in this 'Pass It On: African American Poetry collection'] along with 'I Love My Hair!' by Natasha Anastasia Tarpley and other non-fiction and poetry books that celebrate African American culture, especially during 'Black History Month'. Another valuable exercise would be choose a poem from the collection each day and ask students to research the poet who wrote that poem; the class could, over the span of the unit, construct their own short poetry journals of the various poets' work.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Becky

    What great poems for primary students. Not only do some of the poems teach the students of today some history but they are also relatable. The poems in this anthology are not the typical poems students are taught in school, so it is a great way to introduce younger students to a variety of poetry elements. Upper primary students would probably enjoy using these poems as inspiration for their own poems. The poets in this anthology are famous writer/poets that the students would enjoy studying. Al What great poems for primary students. Not only do some of the poems teach the students of today some history but they are also relatable. The poems in this anthology are not the typical poems students are taught in school, so it is a great way to introduce younger students to a variety of poetry elements. Upper primary students would probably enjoy using these poems as inspiration for their own poems. The poets in this anthology are famous writer/poets that the students would enjoy studying. Al What great poems for primary students. Not only do some of the poems teach the students of today some history but they are also relatable. The poems in this anthology are not the typical poems students are taught in school, so it is a great way to introduce younger students to a variety of poetry elements. Upper primary students would probably enjoy using these poems as inspiration for their own poems. The poets in this anthology are famous writer/poets that the students would enjoy studying. Also, it would be a great book to connect with a social studies unit. (less)

  12. 4 out of 5

    Nicole

    This poetry book contains poems that have been written by different authors. There are some poems that are very short, and others that cover two pages. This book contains eye catching pictures that go with the poems, and helps the reader visualize what they are reading. There are some poems in this book that younger readers could read on their own, and some for older readers.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Amber

    I loved many of the poems in this book and one thing that it does it talk about the many different things that are present in African American culture and gives either African Americans something to relate to, or for other races, it helps them understand some of what they deal with. For example, there is one that is entitled Incident, which talks about an African American boy riding a bus, with a Caucasian boy staring at him every day and calling him names. This can show how it used to be in his I loved many of the poems in this book and one thing that it does it talk about the many different things that are present in African American culture and gives either African Americans something to relate to, or for other races, it helps them understand some of what they deal with. For example, there is one that is entitled Incident, which talks about an African American boy riding a bus, with a Caucasian boy staring at him every day and calling him names. This can show how it used to be in history to kids and show them that this should not happen in today's society. Many of the other poems talk about freedom and the faces of 'my people.' There is also one written about Harriet Tubman, which adds a historical element for the kids to learn about if they read this poem.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Mike Romesburg

    Theme: "Poetry Picturebook" Wonderful poetry and rhyme scheme from several well known authors such as Langston Hughes, Gwendolyn Brooks, Nikki Grimes, etc. These poems apply most to children of the African American culture because they often describe the struggle these people went through to acquire freedom. However, these poems communicate as a whole that tough time do not last, but tough people do, especially when they stick together. Now that is a message that can be carried with children of a Theme: "Poetry Picturebook" Wonderful poetry and rhyme scheme from several well known authors such as Langston Hughes, Gwendolyn Brooks, Nikki Grimes, etc. These poems apply most to children of the African American culture because they often describe the struggle these people went through to acquire freedom. However, these poems communicate as a whole that tough time do not last, but tough people do, especially when they stick together. Now that is a message that can be carried with children of all ages regardless of the culture or racial group they belong to.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Mary Duvernay

    The book contains happy family poems, and serious poem appropriate for all ages. It has poetry from African-Americans such as: Langston Hughes, Eloise Greenfields, Paul Lawrence Dunbar, and Gwendolyn Brooks. My favorites are Daddy’s Little Girl, by Lindamichellebaron and Harriet Tubman, by Eloise Greenfield.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Libby In Libraryland

    Poems in this collection that fed my interest in African-American poetry include "Wait Little Joe" by Lessie Little Jones, "Daddy's Little Girl" by Lindamichellebaron, and "Listen Children" by Lucile Clifton. Poems in this collection that fed my interest in African-American poetry include "Wait Little Joe" by Lessie Little Jones, "Daddy's Little Girl" by Lindamichellebaron, and "Listen Children" by Lucile Clifton.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Katie

    Beautifully written poetry by some of the greats... Langston Hughes, Nikki Grimes... Some are lighter some carry more meaning and stories of struggle. Could bring about some great class discussion. Also great for read alouds.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Kristen

    Sixth grade +. A collection of poems by various authors. Some deal solely with African-American history/life. Others are for children in general. Several touching poems dealing with childhood and history. Amazing artistry!

  19. 5 out of 5

    John Tricksey

    I enjoyed how this book had poems from different poets. I liked how the illustration related to the poems. The poems ranged from playful to serious. The poems definitely provoked thought. I think students would benefit reading poetry from successful and prolific poets regardless of race.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Jim

    floyd cooper art could be a story about bugs or neptune and it would be worth looking at because of the art. this book of good to terrific poetry has an author i'd not read, Countee Cullen's "Incident" is a real punch in the gut. wow floyd cooper art could be a story about bugs or neptune and it would be worth looking at because of the art. this book of good to terrific poetry has an author i'd not read, Countee Cullen's "Incident" is a real punch in the gut. wow

  21. 4 out of 5

    Aska

    African-American Poetry for Children Time to Play - Nikki Grimes To Catch a Fish - Eloise Greenfield Langston Hughes Harriet Tubman - Eloise Greenfield

  22. 4 out of 5

    Cheryl

    I loved the rhythm of some of these poems, couldn't help but hear the melody. I loved the rhythm of some of these poems, couldn't help but hear the melody.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Ashley

  24. 5 out of 5

    Livia

  25. 5 out of 5

    Lisa

  26. 5 out of 5

    Lynette Smith

  27. 5 out of 5

    Allie

    Easy to read African American poetry.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Lily

  29. 4 out of 5

    Sara Weather

  30. 4 out of 5

    Siomara

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