Tuesday, April 24, 2012

In the Garden with Dr. Carver

806HIn the Garden with Dr. Carver
Written by Susan Grigsby
Published at Albert Whitman & Company

About the Book

Sally is a young girl living in rural Alabama in the early 1900s, a time when people were struggling to grow food in soil that had been depleted by years of cotton production. One day, Dr. George Washington Carver shows up to help the grownups with their farms and the children with their school garden.

He teaches them how to restore the soil and respect the balance of nature. He even prepares a delicious lunch made of plants, including "chicken" made from peanuts. And Sally never forgets the lessons this wise man leaves in her heart and mind. Susan Grigsby's warm story shines new light on an African American scientist who was ahead of his time.

Our Thoughts

One morning, I sat down with my daughter and proceeded to read through the book In the Garden with Dr. Carver.  Though this book is an historical fiction, it is based on the history of Dr. George Washington Carver.  Dr. Carver helped many people improve their living conditions by using what nature provided.   Dr. Carver would take a wagon on week-ends and travel in the countryside of Alabama to show the farmers how to improve their land.

This book illustrates one of these voyages he made to teach others how to care for their land.   In it, you will discover how he showed them to transform a poor soil into a nutritive one and how to get vegetables that were good to eat.   In the book, Dr. Carver also help the kids to discover nature and listen to the plants to see what they need.   He also encouraged them to take the time to stay still and take notes/draw what they would see. 

The watercolors are fabulous in this book and the story is well written.  My daughter sat and snuggle next to me as I read it and enjoyed seeing the little girl discover nature.   We also learned the importance of spiders in gardens and why we should leave them alone when we see one.     We both enjoyed the story and thought it was a great way to present nature to a child.    The book is definitively a favorite of mine so far and I am planning to use it again while we study nature.

If you are studying George Washington Carver or nature itself, this book is a wonderful addition for your personal library.    I only wish that a couple of recipes of George Washington Carver would also be included at the end of the book.   I think it would have made it more complete.  

In the Garden with Dr. Carver is available for purchase at any bookstore, even amazon.ca.

Disclaimer: I received a copy of the book for review purposes from Thomas Allen. I was not monetarily compensated for this review. Please note that the review was not influenced by the Sponsor in any way. All opinions expressed here are only my own.

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