Friday, October 2, 2015

PPBF: One Leaf Rides the Wind

Today's Perfect Picture Book Friday pick

One Leaf Rides the Wind,
by Celeste Mannis and Susan Hartung
One Leaf Rides The Wind
Written by Celeste Davidson Mannis
Illustrated by Susan Kathleen Hartung
Viking, 2002, Grade K-3

Poetry, Japan, Counting


One leaf rids the wind.
Quick as I am, it's quicker!
Just beyond my grasp.

One Leaf Rides the Wind, by Celeste Davidson Mannis and Susan Kathleen Hartung is a beautiful counting book told in haiku.. As the little girl counts the plants, animals, and cultural features of her garden, we learn the secrets of what makes Japanese gardening so lovely. This book is a fabulous introduction to haiku for elementary students, though it could be used with upper grades as well.

What I Love:
Susan's illustrations are as lush and colorful as a garden. Celeste's perfect haiku reflect the calm evoked by the orderly elements of a Zen garden, a proper tea ceremony, or splendid Japanese architecture. Like a well-tended garden, these poems will encourage the reader to look carefully at the details of their surroundings as well as the beauty within.

Carp windsock
courtesy Crafty Classroom

1. You'll find teaching resources and lessons plans for One Leaf Rides the Wind from ReadWriteThink and TeacherVision.
2. Learn about the country of Japan with crafts from TheCraftyClassroom.
3. What's more traditional than origami Koi? Use the printed instructions found on WeHeartIt or a video from Bali Origami on YouTube.
4. CreativeWritingNow has great advice for writing your own poems, and Kidzone offers explanations as well as worksheets to help students get started.
5. Discover more about Japanese customs at
6. Learn the techniques for creating a harmonious garden at Garden Guides.

Have you reviewed a Perfect Picture Book along this theme? Please leave the link in the comments below. Thanks!

Check out all the recommended titles for Perfect Picture Book Friday
for October 2, 2015 available on Susanna Leonard Hill's blog.


  1. Wow this one looks lovely on so many levels. Looking forward to this (and I could use a refresher on haiku too).

    1. Thanks. There's an interesting note in the back regarding regional variations to the Haiku form Who knew?

  2. Love books that immerse us in culture! Thanks for sharing this one.

    1. Thanks. It's a beautiful and simple way to broaden a reader's horizons.

  3. Oh my, an older book on Japan I missed. Took a class in flower arrangement when I lived there and it truly is an art form. Thanks for sharing. The illustrations sound incredible.

    1. Do you blog about your experience? I'd love to read about it. Thanks for your comments!

  4. This looks cool! definitely looking for it.... I love counting books and I love haiku. Here's a two-fer! thanks for sharing because I probably wouldn't know about it otherwise.

    1. I think I first discovered it at the library and had to have a copy. I hope you like it!

  5. What a lovely cover! Will be looking for this one.

    1. The illustrations are very soft and the colors are really warm and cozy. Thanks for reading!

  6. Sounds beautiful! I'm always looking for good poetry books for younger students.


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