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Book Reviews, Early/Young Readers, Interactive Ideas, Middle Grade Readers, Poetry, Read-Aloud Suggestions, Teacher & Parent Recommendations

EDGAR ALLAN POE’S PIE By J. Patrick Lewis

Love this book!  If you’ve read Arith-me-tickle this is the perfect next step by the same author.  Delightful poems based on classic poetry which have wrapped themselves around math puzzles to be solved.  (If you haven’t read Arith-me-tickle I highly recommend it!)

The featured poets include Edgar Allan Poe, Emily Dickinson, Walt Whitman, Ogden Nash, Langston Hughes, Shel Silverstein, William Carlos Williams and many others.

The math puzzles in this one involve slightly more complicated operations to solve.

They range from Ogden Nash’s Buggy Rugs inspired by Nash’s “The Termite”:

Some termite burrowed under rugs

And found three hundred thirteen bugs.

If eighty-two plus fifteen snore,

How many termites chew the floor?

to Walt Whitman’s Web-Covered Shoe,inspired by Whitman’s “A Noiseless Patient Spider” which begins:

A noiseless, patient spider–

I counted her filaments, first one, then two, then dozens,

Counted one hundred and forty, unreeling out of her until

A wind gust blew sixty percent of them off

To New Jersey.  That left…oh, who can say how many

Trembling strands remained?

(This one continues on to add a bully spider and new arch bridges to increase the original arachnid’s creation.)

There are many more delights and, likeArith-me-tickle, the difficulty level of the puzzles vary so that they are accessible to all levels.  Children (and adults) who enjoy numbers, math and math puzzles will giggle and stir those problem-solving, silly, poetry-loving juices!

This is a great way to help kids keep up their skills during the summer and a terrific resource to have in a classroom for students who would like a fun extra challenge that they can work on independently or in small groups.  I would also use it as a read-aloud/solve-aloud together to introduce specific math concepts or operations in a classroom.

If you like math…check out this book!

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