From School Library Journal
PreSchool-Grade 1-A girl describes the seasons on her family's farm in the northeastern United States: weather; development of vegetables, flowers, trees; birds' activities; chores; and her favorite pursuits. Beginning in the spring, she plants a sunflower seed and follows the plant's growth throughout the year. The clear and airy text appears on a narrow panel on each spread along with some spot art. The mixed-media illustrations reflect the simplicity of Rockwell's text. Faint collaged bits of The Old Farmer's Almanac behind the text add interest. Halsey uses an inventive device among her more conventional illustrations: she creates a visual flannel-board landscape that appears repeatedly bearing flat, felt-type images (farmhouse, tractor, trees, barn, and scarecrow) with appropriate seasonal details. A clear and general introduction to the cyclical formation of the calendar.-Liza Graybill, Worcester Public Library, MA
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K-Gr. 2. A little girl introduces the four seasons as she observes them at home on the farm. Each season brings changes in the natural world and in her activities. In spring, snow melts, rain falls, a robin sings, and she plants a sunflower seed by her back door. In summer, plants sprout, trees leaf, her sunflower grows tall, and she swims in the pond. In winter, she feeds the birds the sunflower seeds she had picked in the fall and makes a mental note to plant more seeds in the spring, neatly completing the circle of her story and the cycle of the seasons. The first-person text is simple and childlike, a tone reflected in the clearly delineated collages. Combining ink drawings with acrylic paintings on torn paper, these illustrations create eye-catching compositions. A nice finishing touch is Rockwell's appended note, which acknowledges that the story takes place in the northeast, where the seasons differ dramatically, and encourages children to look for local changes, which may be more subtle. Carolyn Phelan
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