Bibliographic Information: Kennedy, X. J., Kennedy, D. M., & Dyer, J. (1992). Talking like the rain: A read-to-me book of poems. Boston, MA: Little, Brown and Company.
Brief Annotation: A collection of poems accompanied by watercolor illustration, selected for their suitability for reading aloud to children, and arranged by topic.
Grade Level: PreK-3
Readers who will like this: Readers who enjoy poetry; readers who struggle with poetry, and are more likely to be drawn to particular content areas; readers who enjoy being read aloud to.
Rating/Response: 4; This collection of poetry was enjoyable, but predictable. I remember encountering this type of collection as my primary exposure to poetry when I was in elementary school. Dyer’s illustrations ranged from acceptable to lovely. I appreciated that the book included a variety of poetic styles, although most of the poems rhymed. I often feel that children develop a false belief that all poems rhyme, and collections such as this feed into that fallacy. The great strength of this collection is the wide range of poets represented, including Langston Hughes, Christina Rosetti, Emily Dickinson, Ogden Nash, and Jane Yolen.
One question you would ask before a read aloud: This book is a collection of poems. What are some ways that poems are different from other books and stories that we read?