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Compost Stew

4.06  ·  Rating details ·  458 ratings  ·  94 reviews
From apple cores to zinnia heads, readers will discover the best ingredients for a successful compost pile!
Kids everywhere are knowledgeable about the environment and climate change. Not only is composting becoming more common in households and residential gardens, but many school gardens feature compost piles, too. But how do you start a compost pile? What’s safe to in
Hardcover, 40 pages
Published March 23rd 2010 by Tricycle Press
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Average rating 4.06  · 
Rating details
 ·  458 ratings  ·  94 reviews

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Oct 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A wonderful intro to compost.
Just enough content and a variety of compostable objects shown.
Lovely illustrations.
So much fun! I was surprised how much I liked this. Pleasant rhymes, engaging illustrations (not my typical cup of tea, but they work wonderfully because they utilize "scraps" just like compost does), and a great lesson about what you can compost (and what you should not compost!) and why it is important. We read this for Earth Day and my children loved it and have asked for several readings since then.
A darling rhyming story to start children off on a composting journey. Rhyming text that goes A-Z educates readers on what is compostable. An author's note in rhyme at the end instructs littles on what not to compost. Gardening parents will love this story.
Sep 05, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-2011, children
Great book for children to learn environmentally friendly activities like composting all wrapped up in an easy to remember A-Z "recipe" - very cute, it even made me want to get outside and make my own stew! The only thing is that the author left out a critical part in the book. No where does it explain exactly what "compost/composting" is in a kid friendly version, it just starts out with the recipe assuming that a child already knows what compost means. Sure parents can explain it to their chil ...more
Molly Lund
Jul 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
This is a non-fiction topic presented through the use of a clever rhyming text. As the story continues the reader learns about the A to Z ingredients that make up the “Compost Stew”. It also features intricate collage illustrations made up of recycled materials from newsprint and book pages, bugs and egg cartons, dryer fuzz and lettuce bag labels. On each colorful page there is much to discover about materials that can be composted. The story and illustrations are delightful. By the end, the rea ...more
Lexi Clark
Apr 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
I gave this book a 4 star rating because it's a good book for younger children when learning the alphabet.

When Siddals puts together her compost stew with things that begin with each letter of the alphabet it can help kids out since the beginning of each word is capitalized so it's very noticeable. The pictures that go along with each of the letters and ingredients of the compost stew is very fun and engaging for younger kids. They will love the animals and all the kid friendly illustrations.
Gail Gauthier
May 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
"...though I am not a composting neophyte, there were items in this book I hadn't heard of. I had heard of putting hair clippings in a compost pile, for instance, but not oatmeal. Egg shells, but not lint. So I'm sitting there reading this with a young child going, "What?" "Whoa, there.""

Excerpt from Original Content.
Liz Murray
I love the collage style illustrations in this book and they really bring the book to life. The book goes A to Z with items that can be composted, and there is a gentle rhyme that moves the story along. I would love to use this book with young children and it's perfect for classes who have worm farms in their care.
sam howie
Mar 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing
An amazing children's book on sustainability, should be read in every classroom. What is great especially is that it breaks down the vast amounts of compostable materials, including those that can seem confusing for adults to teach children like how little bits of paper are actually best put into a compost or green bin opposed to every piece of paper only going in the recycle bin.
Sherry Dorman
Apr 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
What a delightful read and a great way to introduce your children or students to sustainability by teaching them about composting. Would be a great book to introduce the concept of zero waste and sustainable practices. I've purchased it as a gift for an earth day raffle.
Haley Snell
Jan 20, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I loved everything about this book! I could so see myself reading this A-Z book to my students on Earth Day. The rhymes are fun, and the illustrations are very engaging, as they utilize scraps just like compost does.
Orion Kopf
Nov 09, 2017 rated it really liked it
Excellent book says my hippie mom
A Allen
Dec 02, 2017 rated it liked it
A great way to talk to children about things that can be composted while also practicing our letter recognition! I only wish this book had more diversity in the people contributing.
Kyler Lopez
Dec 12, 2017 rated it liked it
This is a silly book showing how to make compost out of old garbage. Its a good book for students learning about recycling and for students that are interesting in gardening.
Feb 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Fun way to introduce composting!
Diana Valdivia-Rodriguez
This book is about composting. I can teach students about compost and green living. The pages are matte, page break and framing. It reminds me of Earth Day.
Jun 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Absolutely loved this book!!! Gardens, collage art, compost.... what’s not to love.
A good introduction to making garden compost. For kids (and not only).
Jun 26, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
We started a compost bin this summer. Great illustrations, nice rhythm and educational. Even I learned a few things I didn't know could go in the compost bin!
A unique ABC book dedicated to educating young ones on the joys of composting. Ashley Wolff's mixed media illustrations are a perfect match, right down to the real coffee grounds and laundry lint!
Tori Crumrine
Illustrations are made using gouache and collage.

This book is a recipe for a compost using items from all of the letters of the alphabet.

The illustrations add to the story a lot because the stew is composed of random and unique things, and the illustrations are a collage and mix of unique images and textures.
Mary Ann
With lively rhymes and delightful illustrations, this alphabet book helps children think about all the different things we can put in the compost and help the Earth. “Apple cores,/ Bananas, bruised/ Coffee grounds with filters used” - these are just the beginning of ingredients that can go into a compost stew. Some ingredients will be familiar, others new: “Jack-o-lanterns/ Kitchen scraps/ Laundry lint from dryer traps.” The illustrations draw students right into this story, showing kids involve ...more
Sarah Sammis
Sep 06, 2010 rated it it was amazing
When we moved to our current home we made the decision to compost. Given where we'd be keeping it and the wide range of temperatures that our patio goes through over the course of a year (from freezing to over 100° F) we knew it wouldn't make sense to get a worm composter. We opted for a bin that just relies on microbial decomposition.

My son was two when he helped me build the compost bin. For my daughter, it's just been a permanent feature of our balcony garden her entire life. Composting is wh
Jordan Cummings
Oct 26, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books
I thought this was a really creative way to show children the appropriate things to put in your compost. The items were listed A-Z and they also rhymed. I thought that was a really cool element to this book. I liked the illustrations and the meaning of the book. It would be a perfect book to let kids know the kind of things that are recyclable and that can be put back into the earth without harming it. However, I wish the author would have explained to the reader what “compost” is. Other than th ...more
Oct 16, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This is an amazing picture book that incorporates the alphabet and the "ingredients" for compost in a colorful and artistic way. The author uses vivid imagery of child composting and the "ingredients" in order to capture a child's attention. The main audience for this book is nursery and primary school children. The author also uses rhyming words to give the story a fun flow. I used this book in my own preschool class when I introduced the concept of composting. The children were so excited to g ...more
Molly Robbins
This would be a great lesson for Kindergarten because the book is about an A to Z recipe for the Earth, so it would be a great way to review the alphabet along with learning information about science. It also goes through every letter throughout the book so you could introduce mnemonics and how they are a helpful tool to describe/remember/understand a concept. This is a fun book to use for any grade because it is talking about earth science. This is such a integral science literature book that I ...more
Algona Public
Dec 11, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-readers, amy
A collage of recycled and found materials illustrate the message of this book. Siddal's and Wolff's story uses the alphabet as a structure for the main idea: composting. Simultaneously, the illustrations create a depth and sense of texture bringing the story out of it's pages and driving home the point of environmentally friendly activity. Educational focus is further revealed at the end of the book with the Chef's Note on what not to add to compost. An entertaining, poetic, beautiful, and educa ...more
So engaging and interesting, I didn't realize it was also an ABC book until I reached W! Ashley Wolff's collage and gouache illustrations incorporate so many subject-appropriate scraps - food wrappers, newspaper, pictures of food and flowers - that each page is a treasure hunt. A multicultural cast of children load up the composter with garden waste, kitchen scraps, and all kinds of things that would otherwise go in the garbage. Fun to read and informative to boot.
Natalie  Sapkarov Harvey
So pleasantly surprised by this book! The rhymes are clever, catchy and gross - sure to enchant listeners and make them laugh. The collage illustrations emphasize the environmental focus - and they're just neat-looking. Sure, it's an alphabet book, but it works across all grade levels - there's so much to glean from this little treasure. It can serve as an introduction to an earth unit, a stand-alone Earth Day read-aloud, or just an earthy adventure of the ABCs.
Eva Leger
Sep 03, 2010 rated it it was ok
Recommended to Eva by: library
Shelves: julias-books
I happen to like ABC books and books with rhyming text are some of my favorites. Julia can agree with me on both of these things but this fell flat for both of us. I like the premise and Julia is very into recycling at the moment so when I saw this at the library I figured it'd be a great addition to our weekly check-outs. I was wrong. I can't say we hated it and Julia adored the pictures, they were her favorite, and possible only, part she really liked.
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