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Runny Babbit: A Billy Sook
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Starred Review. Grade 2-20cm this “billy sook,” which was a 20-year work-in-progress, readers are introduced to Runny Babbit and his friends Toe Jurtle, Skertie Gunk, Goctor Doose, and Millie Woose, and are encouraged to plunge headlong into this phonemic flip-flop world of funny poems. “So if you say, ‘Let’s bead a rook/That’s billy as can se,’/You’re talkin’ Runny Babbit talk,/Just like mim and he.” Complete with signature comical bold line drawings that provide visual clues, the poems require concentration to translate the silly phrases: “Runny fad a hamily-/Matter of fact, he had/A sother and two bristers,/A dummy and a mad.” Children will love these clever poems and without prompting will probably create their own, unaware that they are focusing on a key reading skill: phonemic awareness. This is a treasure.-Lee Bock, Glenbrook Elementary School, Pulaski, WI
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