Gregor Mendel: The Friar Who Grew Peas
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Gregor Mendel: The Friar Who Grew Peas

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3.99 of 5 stars 3.99  ·  rating details  ·  74 ratings  ·  25 reviews
The only picture book available about the father of genetics and his pea plants!
How do mothers and fathers -- whether they are apple trees, sheep, or humans -- pass down traits to their children? This question fascinated Gregor Mendel throughout his life. Regarded as the world's first geneticist, Mendel overcame poverty and obscurity to discover one of the fundamental asp...more
Hardcover, 40 pages
Published September 1st 2006 by Harry N. Abrams
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Lisa Vegan
Mar 05, 2010 Lisa Vegan rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: all children, especially for science/nature lessons
Recommended to Lisa by: Kathryn
Thank you, thank you, thank you, Kathryn.

I just loved this beautifully illustrated and fine science/biography/nature picture book for children.

From the cover showing the kindly looking Gregor Mendel pollinating his peas, all the way through, these illustrations are lovely, engaging, and informative.

I’ve always been interested in genetics (and if I could have tolerated working with fruit flies I might have studied the subject more in depth.) I did know about Gregor Mendel’s work, but I didn’t kno...more
Kathryn
This is one of the reasons I love picture books! I checked this out on a quick whim based on the cover, thinking it was about some cute old friar dude who grew vegetables. Come to realize, Gregor Mendel is the "father of genetics" coming up with the theory of heredity. But I don't remember hearing about him--his theories, yes, but not him as a person, as a scientist. Of course, no one took him seriously in mid-1800s Europe, though years after his death scientists working on a similar theory woul...more
Tracy
I picked this up at the library, hoping I'd be able to use it as a read-aloud to my classes. It starts out great, but when it gets into describing the outcomes of the pea plant crosses, it just gets too wordy and I think it would not hold their attention. I may be able to break it down and get them to pause and think about the benefits of choosing pea plants and the results of the various crosses while skipping some of the text. For students who don't already understand flower anatomy, there sho...more
Crista
This is a beautifully illustrated story about the childhood and early life of Gregor Mendel. Story also contains a very detailed description of Mendel's discoveries of genetics while observing the growth patterns of peas.

Written for upper elementary or middle school students, this story will entertain and educate.
Susan
This picture book biography provides a wonderfully clear and simple explanation of the theory of heredity developed by Gregor Mendel. It also lays out the scientific thinking used in designing his experiment by growing and studying generations of pea plants. Also impressive is the simple articulation of the enormity of Mendel's work: he was the first scientist to apply the scientific method and mathematics to the study of the natural world (biology/botany in particular) which had previously alwa...more
Amy
Yes, the book contains beautiful pictures, and yes, it's really cool that this book is about genetics and Gregor Mendel's pioneering efforts in this field. It's awesome that this is presented in a package for kids. But, I think that the text got pretty wordy and the explanations got a little complicated once we started getting into Mendel's experiments and discoveries. In other words, I don't know that this text would be very accessible to many kids under 5th or 6th grade. Parents and teachers s...more
Anne Lawson
This title was part of Ambleside Online's year 4 curriculum. David (9) loved it. It's in picture book format but the words are not dumbed-down but an excellent example of living narrative nonfiction. How do you both simplify genetics and make it come alive? Put a human touch on it. Give it life by connecting it to a life. Cheryl Bardoe does this excellently.
James Govednik
What a great book to support early science learning in the field of genetics! I was familiar with Mendel's story, and I was pleasantly surprised that the author and illustrator (Joseph A. Smith) could take what would seem to be a boring topic and create such a pretty and engaging book. The science details are strong and would be a good entry for young scientists in learning how traits are passed from one generation to the next. Readers get a glimpse into life in Mendel's rural Czech village, his...more
Ann Williams
An oldie but a goodie. This book will make a great read aloud for when we study heredity. I can't believe it has taken me so long to find it and you guessed it, Mrs. Richards will have to get this one too!
Jessica
Tracing the story of Gregor Mendel, the man who is largely regarded as the first geneticist, this story begins with Gregor’s early life and focuses on his thirst for knowledge. Gregor becomes a friar at the Abbey of St. Thomas where he is taken care of and is able to study as he wishes. The book goes on to discuss Gregor’s experiments with pea plants and concludes with his theory of genetics. The illustrations show Gregor’s pea parings in a simplistic way so that children can easily understand t...more
Jessica Winden
This was a well written book about Gregor Mendel and how his work led to the foundation of genetics. Mendel did everything in his power to fulfill his thirst for knowledge. He later in life did experiments with differnet plants but focusing on peas to learn more about genes, and dominant and recessive trait. Mendel had his work published but sadly many at the time did not care enough about his work. In 1900 three different scientist were able to understand and appreciate how valuable Mendel's re...more
Andrea Retana
I think this book would be good for 2-5th grade. The book is advanced and may be difficult for younger children to understand. I think this book would be good to use during a science lesson about genetics and traits.


Gregor Mendel: The Friar Who Grew Peas, Cheryl Bardoe, Grade 2-5, Introduction to Genetics and traits.
Carlee
This is a beautifully illustrated story about the childhood and early life of Gregor Mendel. Story also contains a very detailed description of Mendel's discoveries of genetics while observing the growth patterns of peas.Written for upper elementary or middle school students, this story will entertain and educate.
Melissa Sommer
This book tells about Gregor Mendel, who was known as the first geneticist. I thought this biography was interesing, but just a little boring to read. This book is definently for older readers who are beginning to learn about genetics.
Jessica Benson
I think this book would be good for 2-5th grade. The book is advanced and may be difficult for younger children to understand. I think this book would be good to use during a science lesson about genetics and traits.
Lauren Hahn
I like the pictures and that it is told like a story. The diagrams are handy, as well. There are lots of dates and numbers that could be used for activities pertaining to the text.
Lindsey Feldpausch
A little long for my 3 and 5 year old, but my 7 year old was intrigued. I was fascinated and enjoyed the factual account and exciting discoveries presented!
Cece
from the Field Museum in Chicago. For youth readers, has pretty watercolors and is a fun story for child reading--but I enjoyed it also! :-D
Rachel
Text is awkward, and some pictures have labels and others don't. A simple biography but could have been better.
Linda
Although a picture book, ite for children 8-10 or above. Nice biography and introduction to genetics.
Christy
Biography of scientist Gregor Mendel.

Themes: science/genetics; value of education; perseverance
Magila
3.5

Great art, just a little boring for a younger crowd. The story didn't come alive.
Sara Taylor-hughes
Good read aloud for older grades. Scientist who discovers genetics
Kate
Kate marked it as to-read
Aug 23, 2014
Kim
Kim marked it as to-read
Aug 19, 2014
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