Poems for Kids and Tweens

April is National Poetry Month—what better time to dive into rhythmic writing?

Younger and older kids enjoy the diverse range of authors, topics, and styles of poetry reflected in these books, read alone or together.


Compiled by:
Sam O.

Kids


Jane Yolen
Children's – 811.54 Yolen

Seventeen whimsical poems featuring allosaurus, stegosaurus, tyrannosaurus, and other dancing dinosaurs.


Firefly July: A Year of Very Short Poems

Paul B. Janeczko
Children's – 811. 008 Firefly

A selection of short American poems dealing with the four seasons and the different weather events and animal patterns that can occur within each.


Hi, Koo! A Year of Seasons

Jon J. Muth
Children's – 811.54

Jon J. Muth and his delightful little panda bear Koo challenge readers to stretch their minds and imaginations with twenty-six haikus about the four seasons.


Little Poems for Tiny Ears

Lin Oliver
Children's – 811.6 Oliver

For babies and toddlers, each moment is full of wonder and discovery. This delightful collection celebrates the everyday things that enthrall little ones, such as playing peekaboo, banging pots and pans, splashing at bath time, and cuddling at bedtime.


The Poem That Will Not End: Fun with Poetic Forms and Voices

Joan Bransfield Graham
Children's – 811.54 Graham

A boy is seized with a poetry bug and cannot stop writing different types of poetry.


Poem-Mobiles: Crazy Car Poems

J. Patrick Lewis, Douglas Florian
Children's – 811.54 Lewis

Wacky, weird, and funny poems about cars that will amuse young children.


Slickety Quick: Poems About Sharks

Skila Brown
Children's – 811.6 Brown

A delightful frenzy of shark mayhem! Each shark is commemorated in a poem by Brown and an illustration by Bob Kolar. Sneaky shark facts inform the brave and curious young reader intrigued by the power—and danger—of these amazing creatures.


Talking Like the Rain: A First Book of Poems

X.J. Kennedy, Dorothy Kennedy
Children's – 821.008 Kennedy

An illustrated collection for very young children, including works by Robert Louis Stevenson, Edward Lear, Shel Silverstein, and Jack Prelutsky.


Wet Cement: A Mix of Concrete Poems

Bob Raczka
Children's – 811.6 Rac

This collection presents words on the page in surprising and delightful ways, with a form called concrete or shape poetry.


When Green Becomes Tomatoes

Julie Fogliano
Children's – 811.6 Fogliano

A book of poetry moving through the seasons.


Tweens

Are You an Echo: The Lost Poetry of Misuzu Kaneko

Misuzu Kaneko
Children's – 895.61 Kaneko

Poetry and history folded into recent events, resurrecting the work of Misuzu Kaneko and bringing the gentle grace of her work to a new generation.


Beastly Verse

JooHee Yoon
Children's – 808.81 Beastly

An anthology of classic poems brought to life through new illustrations by the author.


Brown Girl Dreaming

Jacqueline Woodson
Children's – 811.54 Woodson

What it was like to grow up as an African American in the 1960s and 1970s, living with the remnants of Jim Crow and a growing awareness of the Civil Rights movement—in vivid poetry. Touching and powerful, each poem is both accessible and emotionally charged, each line a glimpse into a child's soul as she searches for her place in the world.


Echo Echo

Marilyn Singer
Children's – 811.54 Singer

What happens when you hold up a mirror to poetry? You get a brand-new perspective on the classics. Read one way, they're familiar Greek myths; read in reverse, and a new point of view is revealed.


Freedom Over Me: Eleven Slaves, Their Lives and Dreams Brought to Life

Ashley Bryan
Children's – 811.54 Bry

Based on original slave auction and plantation estate documents, a contrast in the monetary value of a slave with the priceless value of life experiences and dreams that could never be taken away by a slave owner.


Grumbles From the Town: Mother Goose Voices With a Twist

Jane Yolen
Children's – 398.8 Yolen

A collection based on Mother Goose stories, delightfully twisted and given a new voice.


Jazz Day: The Making of a Famous Photograph

Roxane Orgill
Children's – 780.922 Orgill

A captivating collection that steps into the frame of Harlem 1958, bringing to life musicians' mischief and quirks, their memorable style, and the vivacious atmosphere of a block full of kids on a hot summer's day.


The Last Fifth Grade of Emerson Elementary

Laura Shovan
Children's – Shovan

The story, told in verse from multiple perspectives, of a graduating fifth grade class trying to save their school from being torn down to make way for a supermarket.


What Are You Glad About? What Are You Mad About? Poems for When a Person Needs a Poem

Judith Viorst
Children's – 811.54 Viorst

From school to family to friends, from "Grrrr!" to "Hooray!," Judith Viorst takes us on a tour of feelings of all kinds in this thoughtful, funny, and charming collection of poetry that's perfect for young readers just learning to sort out their own emotions.


You Can Fly: The Tuskegee Airmen

Carole Boston Weatherford
Children's – 811.6 Weatherford

Poems that discuss the life of these famous airmen and their experiences during World War II.