From School Library Journal
PreSchool-Grade 1–This cheerful story is a pleasant introduction to planting and prepositions. When two children help plant a garden, they learn that some vegetables grow underground, some shoot up above it, and some grow on vines that twine around and around. And they all end up as lunch. The rhyming text is simple, but the words are well chosen. The colorful cartoon illustrations are humorous and lively, with lots of motion to keep readers turning the pages. Children will enjoy finding various insects on each page and talking about the roles they play in a garden. A good choice for introducing how things grow.–Mary Hazelton, Elementary Schools in Warren & Waldoboro, ME
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Setting aside the notion of gardens as places of tranquility, this picture book depicts a bustling kitchen garden. Two children help a man with planting, watering, and harvesting vegetables, while a dog, a cat, and a rabbit observe the fun. All around them, snails, caterpillars, birds, bugs, and worms creep, crawl, fly, climb, dig, and generally cavort about this flourishing garden. The ink-and-watercolor illustrations offer plenty of details for children to explore. Cutaway views show small critters nestled in their underground homes between root vegetables. As noted in the title, a repeated theme in the rhymed couplets is the direction plants grow: "Broccoli grows up. / Beets grow down. / Green beans climb / around and around." The short verses create a quick pace and an upbeat tempo throughout. Pair this with Janet Stevens' Tops and Bottoms
(1995) for a lively story hour or classroom unit on gardens. Carolyn PhelanCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved