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Seedfolks Paperback – December 14, 2004
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Sometimes, even in the middle of ugliness and neglect, a little bit of beauty will bloom. Award-winning writer Paul Fleischman dazzles us with this truth in Seedfolks--a slim novel that bursts with hope. Wasting not a single word, Fleischman unfolds a story of a blighted neighborhood transformed when a young girl plants a few lima beans in an abandoned lot. Slowly, one by one, neighbors are touched and stirred to action as they see tendrils poke through the dirt. Hispanics, Haitians, Koreans, young, and old begin to turn the littered lot into a garden for the whole community. A gift for hearts of all ages, this gentle, timeless story will delight anyone in need of a sprig of inspiration.
From School Library Journal
Grade 4 Up. As a vacant lot is transformed into a community garden, these vignettes give glimpses into the lives of the fledgling gardeners. As satisfying as harvesting produce straight from the vine.
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Top customer reviews
If you're a teacher, though, this book is especially helpful.I have taught this book in my adult ESL classes two or three times now. It's a really great book for diverse classrooms, as it represents a lot of different cultures (Black, Guatemalan, Korean, Mexican,Vietnamese etc). "Seedfolks"' organization makes it ideal for new readers , also, since each chapter is only a few pages long, but still gives a great portrait of each character. Teachers can incorporate lots of fun outdoor activities with this as well, or just grow seeds indoors, if you are teaching more than one subject and want to tie in science or social studies.
Some reviewers criticized the book as stereotyping ethnic groups, but I think that's a bit like saying that Huckleberry Finn is racist--maybe the representation of the dialects won't feel 100% accurate to someone who is familiar with the accent being represented, but to get hung up on that would be to miss the entire point of the book, which is that there is more to a person than his or her race.
Other reviewers criticized the fact that some rather tough issues are touched on in a book that's supposed to be for children. To that, I have to say that I am of the strong opinion that kids shouldn't be sheltered from the reality of the world; in fact, the world's cruelty often affects children in spite of our efforts to shield them from it, and to hide one's eyes from that fact only does more harm. Instead, kids should be taught that there is hope in the world in spite of the pain, and I think the book does a good job of conveying that message.