Winter Bees & Other Poems of the Cold by Joyce Sidman and Rick Allen



Nonfiction Picture Book Wednesday

Nonfiction Picture Book Wednesday is hosted by Kid Lit Frenzy and was started to help promote the reading of nonfiction texts. Most Wednesdays, we will be participating and will review a nonfiction text (though it may not always be a picture book).
Be sure to visit Kid Lit Frenzy and see what other nonfiction books are shared this week!

winter bees

Winter Bees & Other Poems of the Cold
Author: Joyce Sidman
Illustrator: Rick Allen
Published November 4th, 2014 by HMH Books for Young Readers

Goodreads Summary: In this outstanding picture book collection of poems by Newbery Honor-winning poet, Joyce Sidman (Song of the Water Boatman, Dark Emperor and Other Poems of the Night), discover how animals stay alive in the wintertime and learn about their secret lives happening under the snow. Paired with stunning linoleum print illustrations by Rick Allen, that celebrate nature’s beauty and power.

My Review: Alyson and Carrie both nominated this book for our Mock Sibert Award, so I knew it was a book I had to read. After requesting that my library purchase it, I was so happy to finally receive the book. This book is beautiful. Each aspect of the book can stand alone: the poetry is full of imagery and figurative language, the informational aspects are interesting and fact-based, and the illustrations are exceptional and bring the animals to life.

Teachers’ Tools for Navigation: First, this book can be used as a mentor text for poetry. Many different types of poetry are represented and each poem is different. Second, I think this book can be a great jumping off point for an inquiry-based project where students research an animal, write a poem about it, and also write an informational piece of text to accompany the poem. This book is also a great companion to Kate Messner’s Over and Under Snow and other animal survival books which would cause for a great unit as well.

Discussion Questions: Which of the winter animals has the best plan for survival?; What fact in Winter Bees surprised you the most about how an animal survives during the winter?

We Flagged: 


Read This If You Loved: Firefly July by Paul Janeczko, Feathers by Melissa Stewart, Born in the Wild by Lita Judge, Forest Has a Song by Amy Ludwig VanDerwater, Over and Under Snow by Kate Messner

Recommended For: 

classroomlibrarybuttonsmall readaloudbuttonsmall

litcirclesbuttonsmall closereadinganalysisbuttonsmall


6 thoughts on “Winter Bees & Other Poems of the Cold by Joyce Sidman and Rick Allen”

  1. I like the connection with Kate Messner’s book – I had not thought of that! I think I saw Sidman is coming out with another one this year, not sure if it’s poetry or not.
    How is Trent doing?

    • I was so glad that I got it! I now see why you and Carrie loved it so much!
      (And I thought it’d fit perfectly this month :D)

  2. I would love to see this text taught with Kate’s. I think they’d be great companions 🙂 I’ll have to watch for Sidman’s newest later this year 🙂

    Trent is better! It looks like allergy to medicine he was on. Scary stuff. Thank you for asking!


Leave a Comment