Jo MacDonald Had a Garden (Jo MacDonald Series)

Mary Quattlebaum
Dawn Publications (2012)
ISBN 9781584691655

Reviewed by Hailey Schlarman (age 3) and Mom for Reader Views (3/12)

Old MacDonald had a farm but Jo MacDonald has a garden!  That’s right, E-I-E-I-O, Jo MacDonald is growing healthy foods for her family and the creatures on her farm.  Little ones will enjoy learning about the process of gardening and even discover a surprise plant!  “Jo MacDonald Had a Garden” is playful, colorful, and educational and lots of fun to read with your child.  Best of all, kids love singing the words to the well-known tune of Old MacDonald had a Farm.


“Jo MacDonald had a garden and a farm and a pond!  She had all of them.  She is lucky; I wish I had a farm and a pond.  Can we plant a garden again?  I want to plan lots of pretty flowers - pink flowers and yellow flowers and blue flowers, all the pretty ones.  I would grow broccoli and potatoes and lettuce but not carrots.  The bunnies would eat them.  Jo plants lots of stuff in her garden.  She digs and digs.  She puts in the seed.  She pats it down.  She waters it with a water can.  I like to water plants too!  They grow.  Jo is happy.  She eats the stuff from her garden.  E-I-E-I-O.”


The Jo MacDonald series is an enjoyable and fun series for my children and me.  It gives them the ability to take something familiar and put it with something new.  In this edition, Jo MacDonald discovers her garden and teaches children what gardening is all about.  It’s a perfect fit for spring.  The illustrations are fun and interactive.  The words explain the process and importance of gardening while teaching about animals, seasons and patience.  I would recommend “Jo MacDonald Had a Garden” by Mary Quattlebaum to other parents.  It’s sure to be enjoyable for children whether they are being read to, learning to read or reading all on their own.


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