Although it may be still chilly in some regions, the bright and cheerful new picture book Rainbow Stew by Cathryn Falwell will make you want to get out and garden with your children right now!
Grandpa turns a rainy day into a rainbow with a trip to the garden. He entices his three grandchildren to come outside and pick brightly colored vegetables in the rain. They splish and splash and get mud on their knees. When they go inside, he and the children cook up a vibrant vegetable stew (the recipe is included). Full of active, rhyming text, this book just begs to be read aloud. The bright, textured illustrations add just the right amount of visual interest.
As shown in the book, gardening is a wonderful activity to share with children. It is beneficial in so many ways, from a fun way to exercise, to learning where our food comes from, to encouraging children to eat more vegetables. Rainbow Stew also helps youngsters learning their colors.
What does gardening have to do with STEM Friday? It turns out that growing plants in a garden opens up a whole world of opportunities to learn about science, technology, engineering and math. For example, use math to figure out the area of the garden, how many packets of seeds will be needed per row, how much the garden tools cost, etc. For older children, the Exploratorium has a cool website about the science of gardening.
For activities related to the book, check the Rainbow Stew Book website for a Rainbow Stew seed packet idea and other resources and activities.
I’m definitely adding Rainbow Stew to my list of gardening books for children. Pick up a copy and you just might get inspired to garden with children as well.
Hardcover: 32 pages
Publisher: Lee & Low Books (June 15, 2013)
Book was provided by publisher via NetGalley.
Come visit the STEM Friday blog each week to find more great Science, Technology, Engineering and Math books.