Mary Ann Hoberman, born on August 12, 1930, was a cherished American poet and author whose playful rhymes and creative stories have captured the hearts of children for generations. Hoberman’s words dance off the page, sparking laughter, wonder, and a love for language in young readers. Her work has left an indelible mark on children’s literature, making her a beloved figure in the world of poetry.
A Love for Words and Rhyme
Born and raised in Stamford, Connecticut, Mary Ann Hoberman always had a love for words. She began writing poetry at the age of five and never stopped! She went on to study art history at Smith College, but her love for words never waned, leading her to a career as a children’s author.
Creating Joy with Poetry
Mary Ann Hoberman published her first book, All My Shoes Come in Twos, in 1957. However, it was her book A House Is a House for Me, published in 1978, that won the National Book Award and launched her into the spotlight. This book is filled with clever rhymes that explore all kinds of houses – not just for people, but for animals and things too!
Hoberman wrote over 40 books, including the popular You Read to Me, I’ll Read to You series. These books are designed to be read aloud by two readers, making them a fun way for children and adults to read together.
Serving as Children’s Poet Laureate
From 2008 to 2011, Mary Ann Hoberman served as the U.S. Children’s Poet Laureate (now called Young People’s Poet Laureate), a position created by the Poetry Foundation to honor a writer who creates excellent poetry for children. During her time as Laureate, Hoberman promoted the idea of reading and sharing poetry aloud, a practice she believed helped children develop a love for language and reading.
Remembering Mary Ann Hoberman
Mary Ann Hoberman passed away on July 7, 2023, but her delightful and imaginative poems continue to entertain and inspire young readers. Her ability to weave words into fun, catchy rhymes has made her a treasured voice in children’s literature. Even though she’s no longer with us, her words live on in the pages of her books, bringing joy and laughter to children everywhere.
If you haven’t experienced the joy of reading a Mary Ann Hoberman poem, grab one of her books from the library or bookstore. As you read her playful words and experience her creative rhymes, you’ll soon understand why she’s been a favorite of children for so many years.