Gardens and plants, Grandparents, spring

When Grandma Gives You a Lemon Tree by Jamie L.B. Deenihan

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Back of Book:
“When life gives you lemons, make lemonade.” In this imaginative take on that popular saying, a child is surprised (and disappointed) to receive a lemon tree from Grandma for her birthday. After all, she DID ask for a new gadget! But when she follows the narrator’s careful—and funny—instructions, she discovers that the tree might be exactly what she wanted after all.
My Review:
I received a copy of this picture book from Sterling Press in exchange for an honest review.
I was thrilled to read such a touching and beautiful story from debut author Jamie L. B. Deeniham. The story follows a little girl who receives a unique gift of a lemon tree from her grandma. Instead of being disappointed, the girl turns lemons into lemonade and finds a way to bring her neighborhood together. This story ties in so many messages including respect for elders, hard work, patience, and placing others before yourself. I loved how the end of the story shows the young girl buying something that everyone can enjoy. The text is written in a second person narrative which keeps readers engaged throughout the story. The illustrations by Lorraine Rocha are whimsical and warm. The details within the pages are amazing and include a diverse group of children playing and learning together. The special note from the author about the cancer ribbons in the pages especially touched my heart. My favorite illustration is the one with all the children placing their toys and gadgets down to work in the garden.
This is a beautiful story that is perfect for any garden or spring unit.
Ages 5 and up
32 Pages

Biography, Gardens and plants

Miss Lady Bird’s Wildflowers: How a First Lady Changed America by Kathi Appelt

 

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Back of Book:
Bluebonnets and lady’s slippers, larkspurs and blazing stars, black-eyed Susans and Granny’s nightcaps.
From a lonely childhood in the Piney Woods of East Texas to an exciting life in the White House, Lady Bird Johnson loved these wildflowers with all her heart. They were her companions in her youth, greeting her everywhere as she explored wild forests, bayous, and hills. Later, as First Lady, she sought to bring the beauty of wildflowers to America’s cities and highways. She wanted to make sure every child could enjoy the splendor of wildflowers.
In this warm, engaging look at the life of a great First Lady, Kathi Appelt tells the story behind Lady Bird Johnson’s environmental vision. Joy Fisher Hein’s colorful wildflowers burst from every page, inviting us to share in Lady Bird’s love for natural beauty.

My Review:
My students are eagerly watching their seeds grow into sunflowers. In the meantime, I wanted to share the story of Lady Bird and her love of gardens and flowers. She had a huge impact on the environment. This book tells the amazing story of how Lady Bird grew up and learned to love all kinds of plants. While in the White House as the First Lady, she started a campaign to make the United States a more beautiful place to live. In her later years she helped establish the National Wildflower Research Center. She was an amazing woman and this story shows readers all the ways she changed the world! The back of the book has a list of beautiful wildflowers as well as an biography note about Lady Bird Johnson. A great story to share with readers when discussing plants and growing.
Ages 5 and up
40 Pages

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Gardens and plants

Jody’s Beans Malachy Doyle

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Back of Book:
When Jody’s grandfather comes to visit, he brings along a packet of seeds for them to plant. Through spring, summer, and fall, Jody watches her plants sprout, flower, and grow lots of beans. Soon, as Jody’s parents await a new baby, Grandpa and Jody are picking the beans – and waiting for next spring.

My Review:
This is one of my most favorite stories to read when discussing seeds and plants. We are getting ready to plant our own seeds in my class so I will be sharing this book before we plant them. I love that this story breaks down the growing process. The index in the back of the book allows readers to look for specific areas of planting. The illustrations are soft and capture Jody’s excitement as she watches the plants grow. A perfect read aloud for classrooms or home.
Ages 5 and up
32 Pages

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Earth Day, Gardens and plants, Uncategorized

Anywhere Farm By Phyllis Root

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Back of Book:
You might think a farm means fields, tractors, and a barnyard full of animals. But you can plant a farm anywhere you like! A box or a bucket, a boot or a pan — almost anything can be turned into a home for green, growing things. Windows, balconies, and front steps all make wonderful spots to start. Who knows what plants you may choose to grow and who will come to see your new garden?
My Review:
This is a great book to share with children. This book shows readers that they can create a garden no matter where they life. It doesn’t take much to create one, you simply need soil, sunshine, some water and a seed. I love that this book encourages young and old alike to go and plant something beautiful. Many children who live in the city, do not realize that they can grow things in a planter box, or a small plot of earth. This story is beautifully crafted, with a rhyming pattern that readers won’t soon forget. The illustrations are diverse and show many different kinds of people planting seeds. Karas did a terrific job of drawing readers into each setting. Candlewick Press has published another fantastic picture book.
Ages 5 and up
32 Pages

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Gardens and plants, Uncategorized

Miss Rumphius By Barbara Cooney

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Back of Book:  This is story of Alice Rumphius, who longed to travel the world, live in a house by the sea, and do something to make the world more beautiful She becomes the Lupine Lady, who scattered lupine seeds everywhere she went and makes the world more beautiful.

My Review:  This is a well written story that has an almost timeless quality to it. It discusses the importance of learning as much as possible and making the world a better place. Alice Rumphius travels the world. The book gives examples of the places she traveled and paints a beautiful picture for readers of different countries. Near the end of her life Alice decides to plant five pounds of lupine seeds so that the entire state of Maine could see the beautiful flowers every year. I had never heard of a lupine flower so this book allowed me to learn something new. This story has fabulous illustrations and is a Caldecott winner.             This is a beautiful story and focuses on how one person can make a huge difference if they are willing to try.

Ages 8 and up

32 Pages