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Cycle of Rice, Cycle of Life: A Story of Sustainable Farming

4.12  ·  Rating Details ·  25 Ratings  ·  16 Reviews
On the island of Bali in Southeast Asia, rice farming is a way of life. The people live in tune with the natural rhythms and cycles of the water and the soil. Ingrained in their community and culture, rice farming connects them to the land and one another.

Balinese farmers have planted rice using an intricate system of water sharing and crop rotation for more than a thousan
Hardcover, 48 pages
Published May 1st 2009 by Lee & Low Books (first published April 30th 2009)
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Sep 18, 2014 Romelle rated it really liked it
First off, I love the title, Cycle of Rice: A Story of Sustainable Farming. This nonfiction book with photographs reads a bit long, but it is a story worth telling. I love the idea of the Balinese' intricate structure of traditional rice farming, which includes a water temple system, worship, rituals, celebrations, and ducks...yes, ducks. The traditional farming is the most interesting part of this book. The story takes a turn when we discover how modern techniques practically destroyed the ...more
Paige Wehmeyer
Dec 02, 2012 Paige Wehmeyer rated it really liked it
Shelves: children-book
The Cycle of Rice, Cycle of Life: A Story of Sustainable Farming, by Jan Reynolds was a wonderful book that has many great facts and learning points built into a fun and relatable real life story. This book is my choice for the 2nd place honor book for the notable books for global society because I feel as if it hits all the criteria for the award.
This story takes place on the Southeast Asian island of Bali. There are two main section in this book the cycle of rice, and the cycle of life. Both
Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance
This book relates the story of rice farming in Bali. For centuries, farming in Bali was done in the same way, with planting, harvesting, and allowing fields to lie fallow. Then modern methods were brought in. Rice production unexpectedly fell. Farmers went back to the old ways.
I had a hard time trying to stay with the story in the book. I have some interest in the subject, but not enough for a book of this length.

A little of the book:

“Kadek strikes harvested stalks against the side of a basket
Sep 13, 2009 Jane rated it it was amazing
This book does a beautiful job of describing the cycle of rice growing in Southeast Asia as well as helping the reader to understand the significance and importance of sustainable farming. In Bali the growing of rice is deeply rooted in the way of life. It is connected to their spiritual practices, to community sharing, an ancient system of irrigation and water sharing between farming communities. Reynolds clearly describes all of this and then introduces how The Green Revolution of the 1960s ...more
Jennifer Varela
Apr 30, 2014 Jennifer Varela rated it really liked it
Shelves: tl-307, non-fiction
Cycle of Rice, Cycle of Life by Jan Reynolds is story of people who reside in Bali which is in Southeast Asia. It highlights their daily lives and it tells the reader that growing life is pretty much essential for them. This book is very informational and details the aspects of incredible farming used by them. Balinese farmers use a very complex but great system of farming, crop rotation, and water irrigation. All these aspects are thoroughly shown in the book’s illustrations. It really makes me ...more
Maddie Sharp
Apr 29, 2014 Maddie Sharp rated it really liked it
Shelves: tl307
Cycle of Rice, Cycle of Life by Jan Reynolds is story of the people of Bali in Southeast Asia. It details their lives and how growing rice is a way of life and part of their spiritual, social, and daily lives. This book is a very informative about the ways of sustainable farming. For over a thousand years the Balinese farmers have used an intricate system of water sharing and crop rotation and these processes are displayed through pictures. This is an important message of sustainable farming ...more
Jan Rue
Jun 11, 2013 Jan Rue added it
Shelves: ed-689-books
Written by Jan Reynolds (2009). This is a picture book which show the factual farming of rice on Bali. There are actual photographs of Bali and it's farming practices. It tells of the ancient farming and aqueducts to water the fields. The story is of one family and a young boy who herds the family's ducks and the growing season. It talks about sustainability and keeping the farming practices of old to continue with the way of life in growing rice. Beautiful photos and show a map of where Bali is ...more
Krista the Krazy Kataloguer
I've got to tell the professor who teaches environmental science at the college where I work about this book! Reynolds has written a beautiful and timely description of a sustainable agricultural practice on the Indonesian island of Bali. The people of Bali have an intricate and clever routine for growing rice, one that has produced abundant harvests for centuries. It all falls apart when the government decides to force the farmers to produce more by artificial means, abandoning their ...more
Miz Lizzie
Aug 14, 2009 Miz Lizzie rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: school age children to adults
A very interesting and informative book about the traditional sustainable rice farming system in Bali supported by an irrigation system built in the 9th century and the temples. The poor effects of the Green Revolution instituted by the government of the 1960s when the "miracle" of chemicals was promised to increase production for an economic surplus are discussed as well as the efforts to return to the traditional sustainable system spearheading by anthropologist J. Stephen Lansing. A great ...more
Abby Johnson
Dec 20, 2009 Abby Johnson rated it really liked it
For thousands of years the people of Bali, an island in Indonesia, grew rice in a traditional, sustainable way. When Indonesian government demanded that they try a different way of farming using genetically engineered rice, the system collapsed. Information on the sustainable practices of Balinese farmers makes an interesting and unusual tie-in for units on environment. The color photographs are beautiful and add to the text. The author's note urges readers to consider where their food comes ...more
Katie Jackson
Sep 11, 2011 Katie Jackson rated it liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
In America most work is done on a machine; farmers till up land on tractors with AC, vegitables are separated and bagged or canned in factories, and then shipped out for delivery in stores.In Bali, their lives are devoted to doing work themselves. The community grows the rice and takes care of it by hand. Bali citizens work together throughout life to produce plenty of food for themselves and those around them. This book lets the reader know that things are done differently in different parts of ...more
Jul 23, 2013 Betsy rated it it was ok
Frankly, this is a bit of a snoozer.

Still, it presents some interesting cultural and religious information about the island of Bali and its all-encompassing life of rice farming. When the government tried to intervene and raise rice production in the 1960s, rice production slowed.

This is a bit of a Book-with-a-Message: sustainable farming is implied to be always better and traditional farming methods always better.
Oct 17, 2009 Mandy rated it really liked it
This book explains the very timely concept of sustainable farming in the context of an ancient and fascinating culture. It is very well organized and easy to read, making new concepts accessible to children. The photos and inclusion of two named children add a story-like interest. The author clearly gives a strong argument for sustainable farming, but does so by presenting the facts and without being "preachy."
Jason Penckofer
Details the return to sustainable farming practices in Bali after attempts to "modernize" reduced rice output. The photos are informational and match well to the text, but something about the layout is kind of plain. Not a big deal because the real draw is the information about sustainable agriculture.
Whole Terrain
Jul 11, 2011 Whole Terrain rated it it was amazing
Read the Whole Terrain interview with Jan Reynolds about this book and her travel adventures.
Chelinda rated it really liked it
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Sep 22, 2009 Samuel Delay rated it it was amazing
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