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Hungry for Science: Poems to Crunch On

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Kari-Lynn Winters and Lori Sherritt-Fleming. (2018). Illustrated by Peggy Collins. Hungry for Science. Markham: Fitzhenry and Whiteside, 32 pages. Ages 5-9. ISBN 9781554553969. Sequel to Hungry for Math: Poems to Munch On. Followed by Hungry for the Arts: Poems to Chomp On.

From the same author-illustrators who brought young readers Hungry for Math (a poetic look at math concepts) comes Hungry for Science. These short, lively poems help young readers explore scientific concepts — from chemical reactions to magnets, life cycles and more. A glossary of scientific terms is included in the backmatter.



    Review by Helen K. in CanLit for Little Canadians (Sept 18, 2018), online at

    It’s Science Literacy Week in Canada and Kari-Lynn Winters and Lori Sherritt-Fleming use rhyming verses and inclusive and diverse perspectives on biology, chemistry and physics in Hungry for Science: Poems to Crunch On to help children see the science in everything.

    There are poems about geology, structures, life cycles, chemistry at work, seasons, magnetism, brain waves, senses, botany, force and differentiating between living and non-living things. It’s the primary curriculum plus in a fun package of poetry and dynamic illustrations by Peggy Collins. And everyone is doing science: girls, boys, monsters, armadillos, physically-challenged individuals, kids with braces, kids with glasses, and kids of all hues and abilities.  It’s science learning at its best and most lively.

    She’s hungry for science.
    Her hunger’s so great.
    Stirring her mixtures
    who’d guess that she’s eight?

    It’s the manner in which the concepts are shared that makes Hungry for Science so entertaining. The life cycle of a flea in “An Ode to Flea” details the birth and death of Little Miss Pesky Flea who

    Lived three months and caused such strife
    a doggone long and itchy life!

    Captain Chemistry helps unclog a sink drain with an all-purpose cleaner of baking soda and vinegar, and Scary Miss Mary shares how her odd garden of “carnivorous snappers and large creepy wrappers and that stinky, zombie-faced rose” grows.

    From Hungry for Science: Poems to Munch On by Kari-Lynn Winters and Lori Sherritt-Fleming, illus. by Peggy Collins

    With a glossary and descriptions of the concepts taught in each poem, Kari-Lynn Winters and Lori Sherritt-Fleming complete Hungry for Science with the expository text perfect for a book on science. Peggy Collins, who also illustrated Kari-Lynn Winters and Lori Sherritt-Fleming‘s earlier STEM picture book, Hungry for Math: Poems to Munch On (Fitzhenry & Whiteside, 2015), ensures the lightness and brightness of tone is reinforced in her artwork, adding quirky creative details like a rainbow of plumes from the primary sense organs and an evil below-ground carrot in Scary Miss Mary’s garden.

    From Hungry for Science: Poems to Crunch On by Kari-Lynn Winters and Lori Sherritt-Fleming, illus. by Peggy Collins

    Have some fun with teaching simple science concepts to children with Hungry for Science: Poems to Crunch On and inspire a child to become a scientist everyday.

    Review in Midwest Book Review 28:8 (August 2018), online at

    The collaborative project of Kari-Lynn Winters (who is a best-selling children’s author, literacy researcher and professor); Lori Sherritt-Fleming (who is a teacher, performer, and children’s book author); and Peggy Collins (who is the author/illustrator of several successful children’s books), “Hungry for Science: Poems to Crunch On” is a poetic look at basic science concepts. This collection of short, lively poems help young readers ages 5 to 8 in exploring scientific concepts ranging from chemical reactions, to magnets, to life cycles, and more! Of special note is the inclusion of a glossary of scientific terms that is included in the backmatter. As entertaining as it is educationally informative, Hungry for Science: Poems to Crunch On is unreservedly recommended for family, elementary school, and community library collections.

    Review by Thomas Jonte in School Library Journal (April 1, 2018), online at

    A delightful collection of short and sweet poems that outline basic science concepts such as magnetism, erosion, and the changing of the seasons. Each poem is short, no more than four stanzas of two to four lines, and is made up of simple rhyming patterns. Some have multiple voices for group reading and reciting, and are easy to memorize. They rarely include words or terms that would be difficult for younger children, and the included glossary spells the words out phonetically to help students sound them out. Girls are prominently featured in both the poems and illustrations as scientists and the characters making the discovery. This would work well for introducing science pupils to new concepts and is a refreshing break from more expository nonfiction books. VERDICT: A pleasing addition to classroom libraries for young elementary students.

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