Mona Voelkel

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Perfect Picture Book Friday


Title: Patterns Everywhere

Author: Lisa Varchol Perron

Publisher & Year: Millbrook Press, 2023

Intended Age: Ages 5-9

Topic/Themes: Patterns in Nature, Poetry, Math/Science


Opening Poem:

Step outside. Let’s find designs –
Branching, cracking, spirals, lines.
Search the earth, the seas, the air.
Patterns, patterns, everywhere.

Readers are invited to go outside and search for patterns found in the world around them. Each two-page spread, with eye-catching photographic images, has an engaging poem about a natural wonder, along with side bars explaining the patterns that are created or observed. Graphics, in patterns related to each topic, are a thoughtful touch. The book ends with a poetic invitation for the reader to look for patterns outside their door.

What I love about this book: The poems in this book are a feast for the ears while the images are a feast for the eyes. I found myself returning to this book again and again. There is so much craft in the poetry writing, the photography, and the graphic design, as well as interesting information about what causes the natural patterns all around us. This is truly a book that invites wonder. A must for K-6 classrooms as part of poetry, math, and/or science units and for anyone interested in encouraging children’s curiosity and close observation of our natural world.


Before Reading: Show students the cover and title. Ask students to describe what they see on the cover and decide on a definition for pattern.

Reading: Consider reading and/or rereading the book and discussing over several days. Go on a pattern walk outdoors where students can search for patterns and then sketch or photograph them. Give students time to share their favorite patterns with others.

Educator’s Guide:

Lisa Varchol Perron’s Website:

Wonderopolis: What is the Fibonacci Sequence?

Writing: Using this book as a mentor text, have students write a patterned poem (AABB rhyme pattern) to go along with a related photograph or sketch of a natural pattern. Add a side bar with expository text, along with patterned graphic design elements. (For advanced poets, consider analyzing and writing poems in the same meter as Lisa Varchol Perron’s poems. Learn more about meter here.)

Poem and page format inspired by and modeled on PATTERNS EVERYWHERE by Lisa Varchol Perron.

Book/Writing Celebration: Have a PATTERNS EVERYWHERE party with writers (dressed in their favorite patterned clothing) sharing the book and their book-inspired poems and images. Archive a presentation of student images with a voice-over of the poems. Compile hard copies of everyone’s work into a class book and gift a copy to the library, alongside PATTERNS EVERYWHERE.

Related Reading:

PATTERNS IN NATURE: Why the Natural World Looks the Way it Does by Philip Ball


I applied to the #PBRising Stars Mentorship program, launched by Kailei Pew and Ebony Lyn Mudd, which gives writers the opportunity to receive guidance from knowledgeable authors on all aspects of publishing. As I await the announcement on May 25th, I realized that I didn’t have to wait to see if I’m selected to start learning from the #PB Rising Stars Mentors. I can learn SO MUCH, starting today, from the books, poems, and writing that all of the #PBRisingStars mentors have already shared with the world. So, with that in mind, I started by reading Lisa Varchol Perron’s wonderful just-published book, PATTERNS EVERYWHERE. In upcoming blog posts, I look forward to reading, analyzing and learning from some of Lisa’s published poetry and her new board book, MY LOVE FOR YOU, as well as the work of the other talented and generous #PB Rising Stars mentors. Stay tuned!

This review is part of #PPBF (Perfect Picture Book Friday) where bloggers share great picture books. Organized and curated by author Susanna Leonard Hill, she keeps an ever-growing list of Perfect Picture Books. #PPBF

Thanks for stopping by! Have you read this book? Doesn’t a “Pattern Party” sound like fun? Who are your picture book mentors? Let me know in the comments.

3 Responses

  1. This is such a beautiful book. The images are stunning, and coupled with kid-friendly poems. I love how it’s an inspiration for getting outside and closely observing our world. Great pick!

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