HOME SCHOOL BOOK REVIEW
Book: One Bean
Author: Anne Rockwell
Illustrator: Megan Halsey
Publisher: Walker Children’s Books, 1999
Language level: 1
(1=nothing objectionable; 2=common euphemisms and/or childish slang terms; 3=some cursing or profanity; 4=a lot of cursing or profanity; 5=obscenity and/or vulgarity)
Reading level: Ages 3 and up
Rating: 5 stars (EXCELLENT)
Reviewed by Wayne S. Walker
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Rockwell, Anne. One Bean (published in 1999 by Walker’s Children’s Books). What happens when you plant just one little bean in a handful of soil with a splash of water? This perfect balance of simple text by author Anne Rockwell and bold, accurate three-dimensional paper sculptures by illustrator Megan Halsey presents a fundamental childhood experiment about planting and observation. We checked it out of the library to accompany our younger son Jeremy’s homeschool science study when he was in grade school. A young narrator describes what happens as a bean sprouts on a wet paper towel, grows in a paper cup, and is transplanted into a large flower pot. After the plant completes its life cycle, the child picks the bean and eats it. The charming pictures show exactly what happens to the bean throughout the growing process.
One Bean is a first concept science book that carefully and joyfully takes young observers step-by-step through a plant’s growth cycle, showing how with patience and a bit of sunshine they can get a full-grown bean plant that makes beautiful flowers and grows a whole new crop of beans, thus appealing to children’s never-ending curiosity about the world around them. Three follow-up bean activities that kids can do themselves and additional factual information for adults to share with young readers are included. It’s a perfect book for a young child, whether blossoming botanist or growing gardener, to learn what’s involved in the growing a bean plant. Other Anne Rockwell books that we have read and enjoyed include Halloween Day, Our Stars, and When Hugo Went to School.