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Garbage Helps Our Garden Grow: A Compost Story Library Binding – January 1, 2010
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Clear, vivid photos give this simple introduction to composting a realistic look that makes the process look downright doable. Based on the text of Glaser's Compost! Growing Gardens from Your Garbage (1996), which was illustrated with watercolors, the wording here is sometimes identical and sometimes reworked. Most of Rotner's excellent photos feature one or two children as they scrape their dinner plates into a bucket indoors, add kitchen and yard waste to the compost bin outside, observe the leaves and food rotting over time, add the compost to their vegetable garden, put new plants into the ground, and watch them grow. The kids look comfortable with the camera and with getting their hands a little dirty in the garden. It's good to find a book that treats worms, mold, and rot in a matter-of-fact way, without exploiting the “ick” factor. Two appended pages answer common practical questions about composting. Grades K-3. --Carolyn Phelan
About the Author
Linda Glaser is the author of many successful nonfiction picture books, mainly on natural history subjects. Her books Spectacular Spiders, Compost!, and Wonderful Worms were all named Outstanding Science Trade Books for Children by the National Science Teachers Association. In addition to teaching and writing, she conducts writing workshops for schoolchildren and for adults.
Shelley Rotner is an award-winning children's book author and photo-illustrator as well as a freelance photographer specializing in portrait and travel photography. She is the author of Many Ways, Senses at the Seashore, Everybody Works, Feelings, and numerous other titles for the Shelley Rotner's Early Childhood Library series.
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Top Customer Reviews
The children of the family carefully collect their garbage and put it in a large plastic container until they are ready to take it to their composting bin. They put things such as "cantaloupe rinds and Dad's coffee grounds from breakfast, leftover lettuce from lunch, old broccoli from the fridge, and peanut shells from [their] snack." They gather and put things in the bin like grass, leaves, vines, flowers and other "organic matter." Every now and then one of the children will spray the pile to keep it damp. Their mother helps turn the pile with her pitchfork. In this book you can watch as this family composts their "garbage" into compost that will eventually put "important nutrients back into the soil" and make "the earth richer."
This is a perfect book to introduce children to composting and its benefits to our gardens and environment. The book has a nice layout and is quite homey in that we see a family and some of their friends actually working on their own compost pile. This personal approach, in addition to the back material, is an easy and fun way for children to learn. Although not stated, you can see how well their garden grows during the growing season. For example, a pumpkin seeding is taken from the compost bin and planted. Later the sisters proudly display their harvested pumpkin. In the back of the book is a two-page tutorial on composting in the form of questions and answers. If you are looking for a casual instructional approach to composting, this is one book you may wish to consider!