Poetry Books for Storytime

Stack of books with wooden toy dinosaurs on top. Poetry books for storytime.
By Bailey Keimig-Gehrke, Youth Services

April is National Poetry Month, which makes it the perfect time to share books full of rhythm, rhyme, and raucous fun with the young people in your life. The following books will remind you how fun it is to play with words and language. By combining humor and wonder, these titles will help bring the beauty of language to life for even the youngest readers during your at-home storytimes.

Poetry book for storytime: 
"Honey for You, Honey for Me" by Michael Rosen & Chris Riddell.
“Honey for You, Honey for Me” by Michael Rosen & Chris Riddell

This book has more than 30 nursery rhymes, poems, and playground songs. From recognizable classic rhymes to near-forgotten verses, this book will tickle and delight readers of all ages. Between the silly scenarios and rhythmic language found throughout this collection, readers will find plenty to chew on in this tasty collection of poems. As the cherry on top, playful illustrations by Chris Riddell help bring each poem to life.

For more poetry collections celebrating a wide variety of topics while combining classic and contemporary voices, try:

Poetry book for storytime: "Guess Who, Haiku" by Deanna Caswell and Bob Shea.
“Guess Who, Haiku” by Deanna Caswell & Bob Shea

This brightly illustrated book combines the short poetry form of haiku with a fun guessing game for a playful tone on each page. Haikus are comprised of three lines with a specific number of syllables: the first line has five syllables, the second line has seven syllables, and the third line also has five syllables. This book is perfect to introduce the concept of syllables to young readers. Have your little ones count and clap along with each syllable for a fun and engaging reading experience. 

To explore more short and sweet haiku books, try:

Poetry book for storytime: "In the Past"
“In the Past: From Trilobites to Dinosaurs to Mammoths in More Than 500 Million Years” by David Elliott & Matthew Trueman

For dinosaur-loving readers, this oversized collection of poetry explores prehistoric life from its earliest forms. From the small but mighty trilobite, to the funny-looking dunkleosteus, to the ever-popular tyrannosaurus rex. Trueman’s illustrations make each ancient beast seem as real and touchable as the neighbor’s dog. Backmatter at the end of the book provides extra information about the different time periods, as well as pronunciations for some of the trickier dinosaur names… try saying quetzalcoatlus ten times fast! The poems in this volume are short and sweet and help give character to each beast.

For more poetry collections about nature in all its forms, try:

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