Our Farm: Four Seasons with Five Kids on One Family Farm by Michael J. Rosen

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This review was meant to be published on Well-Read Child first but due to some mix-up, didn’t get posted.

Stars: *****

2008 Darby Creek Publishing
Children’s Non-fiction
Ages 10 and up
ISBN: 9781581960679
$18.95 US
A Junior Library Guild Selection

Summary: Follow along through all four seasons to find out what the Bennett family does on their farm.

This is a very colourful non-fiction book for children to help city kids see what it’s like on a farm. The book follows one year in the life of one family in a small Ohio farm. It’s told by the five children and their parents and is accompanied by beautiful photographs by Michael J. Rosen.

What sorts of things do we see and read about? Baling hay, tending cattle, raising chickens, snow sleding, hunting, grapevine swinging, putting in a pond, picking mushrooms, breeding cows, school for farm kids and much more.

Each season is separated and at the beginning of the page for the season is a “By the Numbers” section which tells us such things as:

“25 chicks – quantity of chicks mail-ordered for the empty coop, 70 pounds – weight of one square bale of hay, 4.5 miles – length of an imaginary fire hose needed to bring water from the nearest fire hydrant to the Bennet’s burning chicken coop and 40 nests – average number of birds’ nests in the barn during a year.”

Each new topic has a title, a short intro and then words straight from the mouths of the Bennett’s about the topic. Sometimes it’s the parents who talk, sometimes the older kids and sometimes the youngest.

For example, on the page titled: Hay and Hayloft:

“Cayne: The hayloft is where we store the square bales and where we have our clubhouse so we can raise the cows under it. You can’t raise your animals above – that would be a lot of heavy animals over your head!”

And on the page titled: Smell? What Smell?:

“Grey: The biggest manure pile ever was ten feet high. We play who can get to the top fastest or kind of the mountain and shove each other off. Mom says we are happiest when we are dirty, and that it’s really gross to play on a mountain of cow crap.”

It’s a great way for children who live in the city to get a good glimpse of what life is really like on a farm, without having to find one to visit. Plus if you visit a farm, you only see what life is like in that season, where as this book shows you a whole year. I really enjoyed the book and I think that children would enjoy it too.

Links of Interest: NONE

Other Reviews: NONE

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About Kathleen

I've been a nonfiction lover for as long as I can remember. I love children's nonfiction as well and love to share my knowledge and the books I gained them from, with the world. I wish more people would give nonfiction a chance.