CM . . .
. Volume XX Number 39. . . .June 6, 2014
Chepito, like so many children, is full of questions. As he moves through his day in the country, he discovers how his dinner ends up on his table, and why it is good for him.
What may appear to be a simple book about a child and his questions ends up being a very clever story about where food comes from as the farm to table movement grows, it is a wonderful lesson to teach young children – milk is from cows, bananas grow on trees, and corn for tortillas grows in the ground. A comforting repetitive storyline makes this an ideal story for beginning readers. After a reading or two, they will be able to retell the story themselves and recognize many of the words. It is also a great story to teach children about “community” as Chepito meets those who grow and raise the food around his home.
The illustrations, done in watercolour and colour pencils, are muted earth tones and evoke the theme of the book. Food comes from nature, and nature is greens and browns and yellows. A small glossary of Spanish words is included in the back if readers do not understand a word, but thankfully the words are not highlighted in the text of the story, thereby providing a seamless story experience. Why Are You Doing That? is a companion to What Are You Doing?, an earlier pairing of Elisa Amado and Manuel Monroy.
Jill Griffith is the Youth Services Manager at Red Deer Public Library in Red Deer, AB.
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