This is a 2008 honor book for the Lee Bennett Hopkins Poetry Award:
Grandits, John. 2007. Blue Lipstick: Concrete Poems. New York: Clarion.
Here is a Digital Trailer for BLUE LIPSTICK: CONCRETE POEMS created by graduate student Melinda Lanham. (Click on the link below.)
and here is another Digital Trailer for BLUE LIPSTICK created by graduate student Colleen Graves.
Book Trailer for Blue Lipstick
and here is yet another Digital Trailer for BLUE LIPSTICK created by graduate student Jessica Denham (see her July 12, 2011 entry).
Here is a Readers' Guide for BLUE LIPSTICK: CONCRETE POEMS created by graduate student Tanya Harrison.
Recommended age levels 10-14
This book amusingly describes various things a preteen or teen go through. Everything from a bad hair day to science class, to volleyball practice is mentioned in this book of poems. The poems are uniquely written to make pictures out of the words. For example, there is a poem about graphing where the poems is written up and down to look like a line graph. The poems sort of ramble just as a teenage girl would. Any teenager, and reminiscing adult could relate to the events of the book.
2. Review excerpts/ awards
“This irreverent, witty collection should resonate with a wide audience.” School Library Journal
“A cover that’ll grab adolescent girls attention—and the poetry inside is equally appealing.” Horn Book
“Friendly and accessible… it will undoubtedly inspire a multitude or curricular uses.” Bulletin of the center for Children's Books
Lee Bennett Hopkins Award Honor Book
3. Questions to ask before reading
Invite the children to discuss the following:
***Describe a time you have felt different.
***Ask if anyone keeps a diary, or if they don’t what would they put it in if they had one?
***Ask students if poetry has to rhyme, and if not what does poetry mean, and what do they think a concrete poem is?
4. Suggestions for reading aloud
***“Girls!” – Have groups create a “commercial” acting out the poem. Have students vote on which group they would most likely use the services of.
***“Advanced English” – Have the whole class read aloud the poem. Have a “Jessie” and an “Elton” to do the dialogue.
***“My brother the Genius” - group students in groups of three. One reading the part of the narrator, one being Jessie, and one being the brother.
5. Follow up activities
*** Students will make an entry for their journals. It will be a concrete poem using their words to make pictures.
*** Students will write about a time they were frustrated about something to do with growing up or being a teenager. They will include dialog and a picture to go with it.
*** Using fabric pieces and cardstock paper student will create a “pocket” they will glue 3 edges of the fabric to the card stock paper to form a pocket. They will then write a reflection of what they learned from their experience reading the book and put it in their pocket.
6. Related Web site/blogs
• John Grandits website
Information on the author
Here you can see a book review as well as teacher resources
Here you can see a speech about the book presented by the author
7. Related books
Grandits, John. 2004. Technically, Its Not My Fault: Concrete Poems. Sandpiper.
Janeczko, Paul. 2005. A Poke in the I: A Collection of Concrete Poems. Candlewick.
Fleishman, Paul. 2004. Joyful Noise: Poems for Two Voices. Harper Collins.