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K-Gr 2-Mr. Tiffin and his class from How Many Seeds in a Pumpkin? (Random, 2007) head out on a field trip. As the students tour Farmer Hills's orchard, they are introduced to many varieties of apples, get a chance to pick some, and watch how cider is made. Mr. Tiffin also gives them a special assignment: "Show me a little red house with no windows and no door, but with a star inside." The children offer many guesses, but it is Tara, the daydreamer among them, who solves the riddle while thoughtfully munching on an apple core. Karas's detailed pencil and acrylic illustrations show the youngsters engaged in lots of hands-on learning, from examining an old tractor to recording their observations in a notebook. A page of apple facts is included. This engaging story will spark fruitful curriculum discussion.-Linda Ludke, London Public Library, Ontario, Canadaα(c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
While most of Mr. Tiffin’s students hurry out to the school bus for their field trip, Tara, daydreaming again, walks at her own pace. At the apple orchard, Mr. Tiffin asks his class to ponder this riddle during their tour: “Show me a little red house with no windows and no door, but with a star inside.” Farmer Hills leads the tour of her apple trees, storage barn, and cider press. As the children explore the farm, they think about the riddle. In the end, Tara discovers the answer. An appended page of “apple orchard facts” rounds out the presentation. Though the farmer offers plenty of information during the tour, the students’ natural-sounding comments and conversations keep the text from sounding too purposeful, and the riddle’s solution brings the story to a satisfying conclusion. Karas’ distinctive pencil, gouache, and acrylic pictures illustrate the story with their own quirky charm. This sequel to How Many Seeds in a Pumpkin? (2007) is enjoyable as well as informative. Grades K-3. --Carolyn PhelanSee all Editorial Reviews