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It's Our Garden: From Seeds to Harvest in a School Garden
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It's Our Garden: From Seeds to Harvest in a School Garden

4.28  ·  Rating details ·  75 ratings  ·  38 reviews
Want to grow what you eat and eat what you grow? Visit this lively, flourishing school-andcommunity garden and be inspired to cultivate your own.

At an elementary school in Santa Fe, the bell rings for recess and kids fly out the door to check what’s happening in their garden. As the seasons turn, everyone has a part to play in making the garden flourish. From choosing and
Hardcover, 48 pages
Published January 8th 2013 by Candlewick Press
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Average rating 4.28  · 
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 ·  75 ratings  ·  38 reviews

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Apr 23, 2013 rated it really liked it
This handsome photo-essay by George Ancona would be perfect for a classroom planning to develop their own communal garden. There is enough information that many classes could follow the directions and hope for a successful result--especially if they are located in the Southwest, since this book was photographed in New Mexico. No author's note, unfortunately, but ther is a list of recommended books, including Max's Magic Seeds by Geraldine Elschner, and A Fruit Is a Suitcase for Seeds by Jean ...more
Jul 24, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I wish all schools had gardens. Talk about real-world lessons -- and not just about science, but about community building and working together for the common good.
Roberta Gibson
Jul 15, 2013 rated it it was amazing
It's Our Garden: From Seeds to Harvest in a School Garden by George Ancona is a warm and delightful picture book about a school garden at the Acequia Madre elementary school in Santa Fe. Ancona provides both color photographs and samples of the children's art work to document the changes that occur with the seasons.

You will be amazed by this school garden. Besides the vegetable and herb plots, there is a greenhouse, an outdoor classroom, a compost heap, and a cistern to collect water from the
Jennifer Vondra
Mar 17, 2016 rated it really liked it
Twin Text
Grigsby, S. (2010). In the Garden with Dr. Carver. Park Ridge, IL: Whitman and Company.

This non-fiction text was an easy pick due to a connection to our school. Some of our kindergarten classes have their own garden. They start the plants inside and then move them outside. I chose the fictional text because, being about Dr. Carver, it appears to be a non-fiction. I wanted to be sure that students learned not to just assume they know the genre of a book because of the title or
Jennie Smith
Jul 09, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2013-challenge
I appreciated this book one a few levels... one as a new gardener, one as a mother, and yet another as a teacher. In this book we learned about an elementary school in Santa Fe where the children run outside not to play, but to work in the school's garden! We learned a variety of gardening techniques (such as the traditional Native American way to garden- the three sisters garden), but we learned more than that. We were able to see how not just the students took part in this garden and its ...more
Last year I read this review on the blog The Nonfiction Detectives. From their review I believed that this would be an excellent book for our school since we have a school garden also. I immediately purchased it, but didn't get around to reading it until this week. It's Our Garden combines simple yet informative text with fantastic photos and crayon illustrations created by the students. It is a gorgeous book that demonstrates the work, benefits and ...more
San Diego Book Review
Reviewed by Holly Scudero for San Diego Book Review

In Santa Fe, New Mexico, Acequia Madre Elementary School has a garden that everyone helps cultivate. With the help of teachers, parents, and a few volunteers, kids at the school get to spend part of their day learning how to make food grow. There is always so much to do! In spring, the students look through seed catalogs and figure out what to plant. They build a compost pile. They arrange the garden beds and plant seeds. They tend the plants.
Jul 18, 2013 rated it really liked it
This photo essay about a community garden started by a third-grade teacher in Santa Fe, New Mexico, is likely to provide a blueprint for other teachers and schools who would like to start their own community garden. The book follows the nurturing of seeds that are then planted in the spring and then the care required by the garden until it is ready to yield produce. Even after everything has been harvested, there is still work to be done, and the children must prepare the garden for winter and ...more
Zacaro Caro
This book is really good, in an inspiring sort of way, not just a kids book, but would also be great for a school library, and gardening communities. I was intending to read this book to my children to encourage them to get excited about gardening. It's March in Cleveland and we have 12" of snow in the forecast for the weekend I have sprig fever. We are planning our garden, but after reading this book and answering the questions of my 4 year old I wanted to get more serious about living simply ...more
Aug 21, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Fantastic nonfiction to share - will inspire students to tend, expand, or start their school's garden! Ancona searched for just the right school garden to feature and found one that exemplifies the multimodal learning of an outdoor classroom. His beautiful photos depict the diverse plants and equally diverse children learning from teachers and nature. Their drawings, signs, writing, and diagrams add visual interest - and demonstrate "rigor." Anyone looking to start a garden in their school ...more
Dec 06, 2014 rated it liked it
It's Our Garden is a book about a school garden that the students help to build. It shows the different pictures of the plants that they are planting, the discussion about the garden with the students, and what they do with the plants. This book helps to produce an understanding about the work that goes into making a garden. The close up pictures that show what the seeds and plants look like help to show the reader the look and size the seeds. This book helps to put into perspective what is in ...more
Karen Arendt
May 04, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This is an excellent book for plant cycles and seeds in an elementary school. The book follows through photographs and words a school garden created in New Mexico. The students plant, care for, harvest and prepare f
The garden for winter. Students will enjoy seeing children their own age growing plants. The book also mentions the use of butterflies and the Native American tradition of planting the three sisters plants.
Tim Johnson
Feb 09, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: discovery-time
This book lays out exactly what I hope to build our own small library garden into. They grow plants, release butterflies, feed the birds, make adobe bricks, and soooooo much more. Patience has never been my strong suit but if I can grow one crop to start with I will consider that a victory. If you are planning a similar activity this book is written in a simple enough fashion to be a good introduction for the kids.
Mary Norell Hedenstrom
Jan 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Great ideas for:

- how to plan a garden
- how to staff a school garden
- worm composting and school lunch composting
- adobe bricks to help keep water in
- how to grow tomatoes
- how to build an adobe oven in your garden
- music in the garden
- 3 sisters garden
Acequia Madre Elementary in Santa Fe, NM
Jul 02, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
The best introduction to a school garden in action can be found in these real-life pictures and pared down text. Recommended for educators interested in pursuing the joys of a school garden and as a tool to convince the administration that this is a good idea. The book explores the many activities and social lessons that can be drawn from the experience.

Mary Ann
Colorful photographs and clear texts chronicles a year in the life of an elementary school garden in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Students help with all types of work, from composting soil to planting seeds, observing growth to making adobe bricks. Perfect to help plant dreams for communities wanting to create school gardens.
Jun 17, 2013 rated it really liked it
Great book. It shows all the work that goes into gardening with kids, and I especially like that the garden isn't perfect or neat, but wild, messy, dirty and real. It's also a plus that so many different garden ideas are presented.
Stephanie Tournas
Translation of the 2013 book It's Our Garden: From Seeds to Harvest in a School Garden. Through photographs, children's drawings and clear descriptive text, Ancona tells of a Santa Fe elementary school gardening project. Includes bibliography and related web sites.
Kate MacMillan
It’s Our Garden provides an overview of how an elementary school in started and now maintains their garden. Ancona is an award-winning photographer who provides readers with a glimpse into the workings of this school garden throughout the four seasons. IL K-3 Lexile Level 910
Jan 08, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
This book tells the story of how a school garden was create and the students that are responsible for its care. I love how the book uses real life images to tell the story and support the text. This would be a great addition to any STEM school library.
Jul 28, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Author/photographer George Ancona by following seasonal changes brings to readers the entire experience of creating and maintaining a school garden. Students, teachers and community members all have a vested interest.

My full review:
A story about the steps and precautions taken to build a school garden. It has information on how the garden grows and what is needed for it to happen.
Great for kids to read fbefore maybe starting their own garden.
Heather Jo
May 06, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Suzi Sherman
Jul 30, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Great ideas and wonderful pictures to help guide one to begin their own community garden
Karla Talbot
Jan 02, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This photo-essay follows students throughout the year as they plan, plant, cultivate, and harvest their garden. Realistic introduction to the plant cycle and community garden ending.
Angel Hernandez
Jun 23, 2014 rated it liked it
i dont know i want to read it
Sharon Lawler
Mar 03, 2013 rated it it was amazing
A photographic and textual chronicle of the tending and nurturing of a school's garden. Beautiful journey through the year. Inspirational. Resources in the back.
Pam  Page
Dec 01, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Gardening book for children shows the garden and how it is maintained at an elementary school in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Excellent photography; websites and further reading provided.
Edward Sullivan
Dec 21, 2012 rated it really liked it
An attractive and informative photo essay about a community garden at a Santa Fe elementary school.
Love this - a school garden that the kids help plant and tend! Easy to read, and will definitely inspire many classes to try their hands at growing something.
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George Ancona is an author and photographer who has published more that one hundred books, some of them bilingual. He is known for his exquisite photography and close-up looks at a variety of cultural subjects. He lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico.