Aaardvarks look better by faar in the daark.

Douglas Florian’s Mammalabilia offers readers another great collection of poems and artwork perfect for a real aloud.   What I like to do is substitute the word blank for the animal’s name whenever it appears.  The animal’s name is typically the name of the poem too, so introduce each poem as, The Blank.

Before reading, encourage students to listen carefully for clues as to what animal is being described in the poem.  Remind students to hold their guesses until the poem is finished.  Read the poems aloud with extra expression and at a reduced pace to emphasize the language and humor.  When you are done reading the poem, invites students to guess the animal.  Accept three guesses before turning the book around to reveal the animal.

This next poem is called, The Blank.