Over in the Meadow is a counting nursery rhyme written by Olive Wadsworth. The poem was put to music, and I remember my mom singing it when I was growing up. Today, there are lots of picture books illustrating the poem, so when I find one at our library, we check it out, take it home, and start singing.
While it’s fun to see how different illustrators depict the rhyme, there are some other books out there that add even more variation. Several of those books are written by Jennifer Ward and illustrated by Kenneth Spengler. In this collection, you’ll find books about all different habitats, and each can be sung to the same tune.
Somewhere in the Ocean – This book starts out with the mother manatee, and then goes from there! Children will learn basic facts about a variety of sea creatures, including killer whales, sea turtles, clown fish, hermit crabs, and tiger sharks.
Way Out in the Desert – What animals live where the sun heats up the sky? This books tells students about horned toads and jackrabbits, rattlesnakes and roadrunners, to name a few.
Way Up in the Arctic – This cold climate is home for a whole different set of animals. In this book, you’ll find polar bears, arctic foxes, arctic hares, caribou, snowy owls, and wolves.
Over in the Garden – This book features those little creatures that are often easy to miss. Ladybugs, praying mantises, and dragonflies are just a few.
The illustrations are bright and colorful and very well done. The illustrator even hid the corresponding number somewhere in each picture. All and all, they are fun books to read…and sing!
Photo by Forest Service – Northern Region