HOME SCHOOL BOOK REVIEW
Book: George Washington Carver, Plant Doctor
Author: Mirna Benitez
Illustrator: Meryl Henderson
Publisher: Heinemann Library, 1989
ISBN-13: 978-0817235222 (Hardcover)
ISBN-10: 0817235221 (Hardcover)
ISBN-13: 978-0811467193 (Paperback)
ISBN-10: 0811467198 (Paperback)
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 4-8
Rating: ***** 5 stars (EXCELLENT)
Reviewed by Wayne S. Walker
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Benitez, Mirna. George Washington Carver, Plant Doctor (published in 1989 by Heinemann Library, a division of Steck-Vaughn). George Washington Carver was an amazing man. The exact day and year of his birth are unknown. Born into slavery at Diamond Grove, Newton County, near Crystal Place, now known as Diamond, MO, probably in January of 1864, he became a scientist, botanist, educator, and inventor who developed and promoted about 100 products made from peanuts that were useful for the house and farm, including cosmetics, dyes, paints, plastics, gasoline, and nitroglycerin. His reputation is based on his research into and promotion of alternative crops to cotton, such as peanuts, soybeans, and sweet potatoes, which also aided nutrition for farm families.
The history curriculum we used when our boys were in second grade told the story of the United States through biographical sketches, one of whose was George Washington Carver, so when our older son Mark was studying about him, we checked this Real Readers Series Level Blue book out of the library to give him some extra reading material. It is a short biography of the famous agriculturist for beginning readers which chronicles his struggle to get an education, his work at the Tuskegee Institute, and how he helped popularize peanuts as a cash crop in the South. These Real Readers from Heinemann Library have engaging stories and colorful pictures that make for delightful reading by young students.