Today I Am a River

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Pub Date 18 Apr 2023 | Archive Date 21 Apr 2023

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Bright, lyrical poems and lovely illustrations encourage children to immerse themselves in the natural world.

Today I am sunlight!
Heart happy,
as a yellow bird
flying to the top
of the sky,
shining and calling
I am sunlight!

Beautiful poetry and entrancing art inspire young readers to celebrate the natural world through movement, imagination, and play. As they pretend they are a skunk or a snake, sunlight or a stone, they will move their bodies and enjoy imaginative play.

From the creative team who brought you Breathe and Be: A Book of Mindfulness Poems comes a perfect book for quiet time or bedtime, as well to spark activities for story time or in the classroom. Today I Am a River empowers children to imagine the world from a multitude of perspectives other than their own and instills in them an appreciation and reverence for the natural world.

Bright, lyrical poems and lovely illustrations encourage children to immerse themselves in the natural world.

Today I am sunlight!
Heart happy,
as a yellow bird
flying to the top
of the sky,

Available Editions

EDITION Other Format
ISBN 9781683649823
PRICE $18.99 (USD)

Available on NetGalley

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Average rating from 25 members

Featured Reviews

I just want to sit down and cry seeing how beautiful the entire book is!

Thank you, Sounds True Publishing, for the advance reading copy.

The illustrations are dreamy perfect! The artwork, the colours, the presentation: everything is prefect.

The poetry parts. They are so soothing. Perfect for the reading age group but also for everyone who gets to read this precious book.

Do look out for this beautiful book when it comes out.

A personal favourite now.

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Kids should be exposed to beautiful poetry and art as part of their reading experience. The ebb and flow of playful, creative, rhyming language included in "Today I Am a River" is a celebration of the natural world.

Kids can use their imagination and creativity as they make believe they are a snake, skunk, wind, sunlight, or even a stone, just to name a few.

" Poetry can be a powerful teaching tool, helping kids improve their literacy. It can also allow writers to express their emotions and allow readers to connect to those emotions. Poetry is also connected to aesthetics, or the exploration of what is beautiful in the world." --

"Today I Am a River" is a lovely book to share at bedtime or any quiet time. It is inspirational and empowers kids to open up their eyes and imaginations to see their world from other perspectives. I love the book and highly recommend it.

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This book is rich with imagery. It invites the child to explore a river, a tree, the wind any more other objects and creatures.

What a lovely find! This book is suitable book to introduce poetry to children and enhance their love of reading.

The colors and illustrations are deep and vibrant.

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I really loved the visuals and the bright colors in the illustrations. All the things a child can "be" were lovely, and I felt this book would be great for classroom or story time read alouds. Some of the poems really hit home for me, and others I felt the rhythm was off. But over all, a wonderful book to inspire and educate children

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This picture book features simple, nature-themed poems and charming, colorful illustrations of natural scenes. The book moves through different seasons and takes the perspective of different plants, creatures, and times of day, imagining their perspectives and showing what we can learn from them. Although these are not traditional rhyming poems, they have a consistent meter and are highly readable, with a strong sense of rhythm and pacing. I enjoyed the creative style, and the solid mix of concrete images and figurative language.

Although many people assume that picture books are only for the 0-5 crowd, this book would be excellent for school-age kids to read and use as inspiration for their own poetry. The final page in the book offers some suggestions for different ways to experience the poems and write similar things.

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Today im a river by Kate Coombs with illustrations by Anna Laitinen is a short book that made me close my eyes and evoke many of the things the author was describing. It made me feel the wind blowing through the forest, see how the leaves on the trees change and hear the river flowing down the hillside.
The animals that the author has selected are peculiar, but in the good sense of the word, since spiders and snakes are among the most feared and most feared living beings in the animal kingdom, but the way she describes them in her narration has made me feel more curious than anything else.

The illustrations that accompany the descriptions seem to jump out of the book and I liked the fact that the children were the protagonists, as they are the ones who are curious, who ask questions, who are not afraid and who look at the world with different eyes.
Kate Coombs makes poetry with her words and has made me travel back to my childhood, feeling nostalgic for that way of living, feeling or observing things.
I think that capacity for wonder comes back with books like Today im a river.

I remember that when I was little, every day and every hour I changed my mind and I wanted to have one profession or another, to go to one place or another. So when I read Today im a... in the book, I was eager to see what the author had chosen and how she feels about it.
It is difficult to put yourself in the shoes of the wind or of a river and that, when reading, you feel that it has a spirit and that it has communicated with Kate.
32 pages that I didn't really enjoy. I enjoyed it very much and I recommend it to adults and children alike.

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Everything I could have asked for in a Children’s book plus incredible poetry. I cannot wait to read this over and over with my kids.

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In Today I Am a River, a lyrical introduction states, “I can be anything / everything.” What follows are fourteen free verse poems, each on its own full page spread, that use phrases like “today I am” and “now I am” to personify various elements of nature, like animals, rain, clouds, and wind (to name a few). Backmatter discusses the principal of embodied learning and lists practical ways we can explore the world using our bodies.

The poems throughout Today I Am a River are easy to read and beautiful in their simplicity. They don’t feel beyond the capacity of a child themselves to write, but also don’t lack in sophistication, a balance for which this author should be applauded. The illustrations are soft and whimsical, though some have strange physics-defying features that may or may not have been intentional on the artist’s part. I prefer to err on the side of whimsy, but since the perspective is accurate in some illustrations and not others, it’s impossible to know for sure. The backmatter is informative and actionable, though the word “embodied” could have been better defined for young readers.

Minor, but a missed opportunity: since the first poem is Today I Am a River, I expected the poem Cloud with the line “…and become / a river again” would be the last. Instead, there are two more, ending with Evening, perhaps to make this more of a bedtime book.

Most characters present cis, straight, and able-bodied, with variations in skin tone on almost every page.

An excellent read and a fantastic addition to any shelf.

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"Today I am a River" is a poetry book that highlights different parts of nature and its characteristics. The illustrations that accompany each poem really add to the experience as they have a watercolor, dreamlike essence to them. It encourages kids to role-play being different things in nature like the sun or wind, which is a wonderful meditation experience.

Poetry books for kids with beautiful writing and art have been something I have struggled to find. As a preschool teacher, I strive to make sure my students are getting exposure to lots of different kinds of literature, but poetry is something I don't have enough of. I will definitely be adding this book to my collection!

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I received an arc of this title from NetGalley for an honest review. A fun picture book written in tense or poetry about kids playing in nature.

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This beautifully illustrated collection of poems is sure to be a hit with little readers. While Today I Am A River is made up of a variety of poems, each is brief enough that this book could be read through in its entirety as a whole-class read aloud. The theme of each poem aligns perfectly with the colorful watercolor illustrations, and children will get a giggle out of the more unexpected titles (looking at you, Skunk!).

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Beautiful illustration. Cute “I am” poems you could really use this wit a lesson in poetry in elementary levels. You could use it to introduce poetry and incorporate writing by students choosing their favorite one from the book to model with their own writing. I liked how it makes you feel like people are always evolving and becoming a better version of themselves.

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This had such beautiful words and pictures! I would recommend this for classrooms, libraries and at home!

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This sweet picture book in verse weaves together beautiful illustrations with the imagery in the text to create a wonderful master piece. Each poem (page) is another element of nature, including trees, rivers and owls. Each poem includes some rhyming words, but does not follow a standard ABAB or AABB pattern, in fact there are actually quite a variety of rhyming patterns that would be interesting for children to explore. It would also be interesting to look at the use of repetition and alliteration - can you tell I'm a teacher? lol. In summary, this is a beautiful book inside and out, and would be a perfect addition to a family bookshelf or an elementary library, as it is full of great literary ideas and has picturesque images and words to soothe readers. I would highly recommend it! Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for giving me the chance to read and review this book!

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What a lovely book. My son is 3.5 and I think he would enjoy this, especially with the gorgeous illustrations. But I'm 35 and I also felt a deep sense of calm while reading this. I absolutely love children's books that expose them to beautiful poetry!

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