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Celia Lottridge. Illustrated by Karen Patkau.
Toronto, ON: Oxford University Press, l986
unpaged, paperbound boards, $9.95.
ISBN 0-19-540473-4. CIP.

Subject Heading:
Counting-Juvenile literature.

Preschool-grade 2 / Ages 3-7

Reviewed by ane Robinson.

Volume 15 Number 1
1987 January

One Watermelon Seed is essentially a counting book. But the story setting that author Celia Barker Lottridge has chosen for developing the number concepts 1-10 and 1-100 clearly demonstrates her background as a storyteller and a teacher-librarian. Many varied concepts are very naturally integrated in her description of two young children who plant a garden and later harvest the vegetables and fruit they have grown.

The text is kept very simple and remains uncomplicated throughout, while the possibilities and opportunities for discussion and application for real-life experiences abound. The pace at which the story is told matches the attention span of the intended audience and yet still successfully describes what is in real life a very long process, requiring great patience and hard work on the part of the sower. The full-page collage illustrations suit the simplicity of the text and yet depict the growing and harvesting process in enough detail to fill in any gaps. Colours are vibrant and true to life, as are the people, plants, and animals.

The only possible confusion anticipated is in the placement of the numerical representation for the numbers 10-100. Each number is given in both its symbol and its printed word form. Young children may confuse the number symbols for page numbers and wonder why the latter pages do not follow the original one-by-one sequencing.

Highly recommended for school, classroom, and public libraries.

Jane Robinson, Greenway E.S,, Winnipeg, MB.
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