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Jo MacDonald Had a Garden
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Jo MacDonald Had a Garden (Jo MacDonald)

3.8 of 5 stars 3.80  ·  rating details  ·  75 ratings  ·  27 reviews
Old MacDonald had a ... garden? Yes! Sing along with young Jo MacDonald as she grows healthy food for people and wild creatures. E-I-E-I-O! Find out how butterflies, bumblebees, and birds help a garden to thrive - and how you can help them too. And keep an eye on one mysterious plant. What will it become? Youngsters learn about garden ecosystems and stewardship through thi ...more
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published March 1st 2012 by Dawn Publications
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Miss Rumphius by Barbara CooneyThe Curious Garden by Peter  BrownThe Gardener by Sarah StewartPlanting a Rainbow by Lois EhlertMy Garden by Kevin Henkes
Picture Books About Gardens
66th out of 176 books — 92 voters
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VCFA Picture Books
50th out of 167 books — 7 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-29 of 111)
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Wayne S.
If you had a garden, what would you plant in it? Or if you do have one, what do you plant? First, we all know that “Old MacDonald had a farm.” Then we found out that on this farm his granddaughter Jo MacDonald Saw Pond. Now, Jo plants, tends, and harvests a garden on her grandfather’s farm, with help from her cousin Mike. So Mary Quattlebaum’s cute text, following the rhythm and tune of the well-known song, and Laura J. Bryant’s adorable water-color illustrations which accompany it, will acquain ...more
Kristi Bernard
Planting a garden can provide food for people and animals. Birds, insects and other creatures can settle down in a safe Eco-friendly environment that children can be proud of. Children will also love watching their newly planted garden sprout to life. Children can read along and sing a song to the tune of “Old McDonald Had A Farm” with Jo, the granddaughter of Old McDonald, and her friend. Young readers and parents too, will clap their hands and tap their toes while watching the progress of the ...more
This is such a hoot to read. My four and six year olds love it.

It has wonderful artwork throughout the pages and the story is SO cute. My kids giggle and laugh every single time we read it.

It's a bedtime favorite at our household.
This book works around a simple concept: take the tune of a traditional folk song and put one's own words to it to make it new. So the "Old MacDonald" song works well for the new "Jo MacDonald" song. The illustrations are large enough to share with a group of children and this book would be fun to sing to a group. In addition to the simple story of growing and harvesting a garden, the author includes extended activities at the end of the book, which make it useful also for classroom teachers and ...more
Celebrate gardening with this cheery picture book that features Old MacDonald’s granddaughter, Jo MacDonald. The verses here are set to the same music as the original, except this time it’s all about planting a garden rather than the animals on a farm. In the garden there is some sun, some soil, a worm, seeds, water, animals, plants, and then food! Watching the illustrations, children will see the garden take shape and then watch the plants grow until they are ready to be harvested.

I thought this was cute and clever, but about half way through my 6 year old announced, "This is getting boring! Aren't you done yet?" The repetitive nature of the song did not appeal to her after a couple of verses...perhaps a couple of years ago she would have enjoyed it.
A twist on the Old MacDonald Had a Farm song for young children. Cute, playful illustrations accompany the rhythmical text. Nice information in the back on a garden community, activities to do indoors with plants, and other information for young gardeners.
I was so excited by the idea of this one when I first ordered it. I liked the idea of Old MacDonald's Daughter getting a song. Unfortunately it just felt a little too long and a little too repetitive for me, most likely b/c I couldn't stop myself from singing it in my head and I usually stop at 4 animals.

I will admit that it felt like a nice way to present the information, the illustrations were very nice and I liked the informational/reading guide section in the back. I'm thinking of trying to
I love this new twist on an old classic. My six-year-old son was less impressed because farm noises are so much more fun that garden noises. The illustrations were adorably perfect.
Mary Lee
A new take on the Old MacDonald farm rhyme follows a garden through the seasons.
Great variation on the song!
A great picture book to engage children when read to the tune of "Old MacDonald Had a Farm" and adding simple actions to suit the story. Full of charming and colorful illustrations showing planting, watering, and other garden activities. The book also includes terms, activites, and resources for young gardeners. Toddlers and preschoolers at my library storytime really enjoyed interacting with the story and learning how to tend a garden.
Old MacDonald (of E-I-E-I-O fame) has a garden, not just a farm. And on that farm he had a little girl, her name was Jo and she loves to tend the garden throughout all the seasons.
Cute, I really liked this little girl and her diligence to her garden. I also really enjoyed this story, it would be so great for a read-aloud for young readers.
A gardening twist on a favorite children's song. Text begs to be sung and even opens itself up to sing-along actions. Very well done! Illustrations match the text well. Great read aloud. Can't wait to share this with a group of kids.

Lots of back matter here: indoor activities, gardening tips, suggested websites and nature books, as well as discussion about the arden community.
♥ Amanda
What a wonderful book! I was trying to come up with a way to get my 3 yr old interested in helping me plant some veggies and flowers, and I believe this book piqued her interest more than if I would've just brought the idea up on my own! She of course knows the song, and now sings it every time we check on our "harvest" . I need to find more books like this!
Really liked the twist on Old MacDonald, first for being a female main character, and second for extending the idea to other areas of farming! Using verbs was a great substitute for animal noises. My 3 year old stopped me on the first verse, saying it wasn't right, but once I explained that it was a different version she really seemed to get into it.
I loved this book! Such a fun read aloud/sing along on this version of Old MacDonald. Not to mention informative; which is all us big people enjoy having in books. Teaching something in a fun way without being obviously educational is challenging, Mary Quattlebaum did that perfectly in this picture book.
Super-cute book about a girl who grows a beautiful flower and veggie garden--all to the tune of "Old MacDonald." The story follows Jo and her helpers through all four seasons, and demonstrates, in a fun way, plant life cycles, where food comes from, and the principle of the harvest.
In this version of the classic song "Old MacDonald Had a Farm," the farmer's granddaughter plants a garden which provides a place for birds, insects, and other wild creatures to shelter and nest. Backmatter presents facts and activities related to this lively ecosystem.
Looking forward to trying this one with a group of 4-5 year olds at an organic farm talk. Great feel to the pages and should be a great launch-point for discussing how anyone can and should tend some soil.
Learn about Jo McDonald's garden and the different insects and animals that help her garden thrive in this variation of "Old MacDonald Had a Farm."
Edward Sullivan
"Old MacDonald Had a Farm" is playfully adapted to explain gardening to young readers.
This book actually got me to sing (such as it is) to one of my story time groups.
Grades k-2. Life cycles of plants. Seasonal changes.
-To the tune of Old MacDonald -Graden
Dec 26, 2014 Dana rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: kids
Sweet variation. Fun to sing!
GoldfiKids marked it as to-read
Jun 25, 2015
Julie Johnson
Julie Johnson marked it as to-read
Jun 22, 2015
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Other Books in the Series

Jo MacDonald (3 books)
  • Jo MacDonald Saw a Pond
  • Jo Macdonald Hiked in the Woods
Pirate vs. Pirate: The Terrific Tale of a Big, Blustery Maritime Match Jo MacDonald Saw a Pond The Hungry Ghost of Rue Orleans Sparks Fly High: The Legend of Dancing Point Jackson Jones and the Puddle of Thorns

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