Purpose of this Blog...

You may have noticed that not all books are equal in capturing children's imaginations and in cultivating those innocent, tender souls. My goal is to help you find the ones that do!
(Painting by Mary Cassatt: "Mrs Cassatt Reading to her Grandchildren" -1888)

Thursday, June 17, 2010


Summer is a great time to read and learn about seeds and planting! There are some wonderful picture books out there that may inspire you and your child to start your own backyard garden...

Preschool-2nd grade
THE CARROT SEED, by Ruth Krauss - illustrations by Crockett Johnson. Children will love the simple drawings in this story about a little boy who not only plants a seed, but tends it carefully and waits patiently - even though everyone tells him, "it won't come up".
ONE BEAN, by Ann Rockwell - illustrations by Meghan Halsey. You'll want to try some of the activities at the end of this book! A look at exactly what happens to a bean as it sprouts on a wet paper towel - bright and accurate illustrations make learning about plant cycles interesting for even young children.
FROM SEED TO PUMPKIN, by Wendy Pfeffer - illustrations by James Graham Hale. Sweet watercolor-and-pencil illustrations of children planting and taking care of their pumpkins. Some simple recipes and experiments are included.
A FRUIT IS A SUITCASE FOR SEEDS, by Jean Richards - illustrations by Anca Hariton. Fun introduction to seeds, with nice watercolor pictures.

Kindergarten-3rd grade
THE LADY AND THE SPIDER, by Faith McNulty - illustrations by Bob Marstall. Spiders are NOT among my favorite things, but I couldn't resist this serene story of a lady and the green spider that lives in her lettuce patch. Learning about what goes on in a spider's daily life will help young ones (and moms), who might be squeamish about these eight-legged creatures, appreciate, instead of fear them!
George Washington Carver learned about plants by taking care of other people's gardens. This man, who devoted his life to helping the south improve its agriculture, was born to slave parents and didn't go to college until he was 30 years old!
ALL IN A DAY, by Cynthia Rylant - illustrations by Nikki McClure. The black and white paper art cut-outs by Nikki McClure, on alternating pastel blue and yellow backgrounds, are a beautiful pairing with the quiet poetic text, written by Cynthia Rylant, about a day in the life of a boy on a farm. He not only waters his garden and gathers eggs, but picnics and naps with his pet hen.

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