A Great Big Cuddle: Poems for the Very Young
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The poem uses two repeated phases, ‘bounce bounce’ and ‘pounce pounce’. These phrases are very memorable as they act as the body for the poem. Each stanza contains one of these phrases, helping to create a repeating pattern throughout.
Michael Rosen: A Great Big Cuddle, illustrated by Chris
Most of my adult life, I've been a freelance writer, teacher (of sorts), journalist, performer and broadcaster. I visit schools doing my one-man show, and support Arsenal Football Club.It is also worth noting that without including any verbal instructions, even the dullest of parental readers will catch on pretty early that many of these poems are interactive. Consider “Finger Story” where your fingers are instructed to do everything from “wake up” and “stretch” to “climb” and “slide”. And just in case they’re still not getting it, Chris Riddell’s art is on hand, showing a pudgy youngster and an orangutan of uncommon sweetness walking their fingers together on the ground.
Oh Dear | Centre for Literacy in Primary Education - CLPE
What is interesting to me here is that in terms of age of the reader, Rosen isn’t limiting himself solely to toddlers. There are a couple poems in here that preschoolers would probably appreciate more than their drooling, babbling brethren. “I Am Hungry”, for example, stars a hungry bear listing everything he could eat at this moment (both the usual fare and unusual selections like “A funny joke” or “The sound of yes”) ending with “Then I’ll eat me” which is just the right level of ridiculousness to amuse the canny four-year-old. And “Don’t Squash” is going to ramp up the silly levels pretty effectively when a splatter happy elephant is instructed not to squash her toes, nose, a bun, the sun, cars, stars, a fly, or the very sky. Shortlisted for the CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal 2017 | Joint Winner of the CLiPPA 2016 (CLPE Children’s Poetry Award).I have often written about my life and family, but I also write occasional fantasy (usually based in a real place) and non-fiction. Where does the inspiration for this poem come from? Is it based on a real tiger as it finds its roar or is it based on a toy or even a child? Two of the biggest names in children's publishing, Michael Rosen and Chris Riddell, come together in a new poetry collection.
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Michael Rosen isn’t a household name in United States, but I’d say at least one of his books is. Anyone who has ever sought out or read We’re Going on a Bear Hunt, illustrated by Helen Oxenbury has read his words. We’re just nuts about that book, and we have him to thank for it. Despite that, he’s not an author to relegate himself to just one kind of story. Indeed, I haven’t seen him produce much of anything quite as young as “Bear Hunt” in years (or, at the very least, I haven’t seen works of his brought to U.S. shores this “young” in content). That’s why this book is such a surprise and a delight. The poem is positioned in quite an unusual way, starting in the top left-hand corner and progressing diagonally downwards to the bottom right-hand corner. The way that each verse is positioned encourages the reader to speed up when reading bringing purposeful tension to the poem. There is also an effect of each verse and accompanying illustration getting closer as the poem progresses, which gives the same effect. Michael Rosen is a hugely bestselling author of picture books and poetry. Michael frequently appears on radio and gives talks and lectures on children’s literature. Michael was the Children’s Laureate for 2007–2009 and the winner of the Eleanor Farjeon Award. He lives in London.Apart from the use of repetition, the main techniques in this poem come from the layout and illustrations. For this poem the illustrations are very powerful as they help to paint a picture of the tiger’s journey. At the beginning of the poem when the phrase ‘bounce bounce’ is used, the tiger is portrayed through the illustrations as an infant who is quite unsure and anxious. The poem then develops to use the phrase ‘pounce pounce’ in replace of ‘bounce bounce’, as this happens, the tiger is displayed by the illustrations in a much more confident and grown-up way. The illustrations therefore help hugely with deepening the development of the poem. When I read this poem, to me, the phrases have very positive connotations. This is because of the words used such as ‘boing’ and ‘bounce’, making the poem seem happy and therefore enjoyable for both the reader and the audience. The phrases also made me think of words children may use when they are playing such as ‘jump’ and ‘ball’, this will therefore not only be more relatable for the children, but will also help to reinforce this vocabulary.