Too Many Tomatoes
written by Eric Ode; illustrated by Kent Culotta
2016 (Kane Miller)
Source: Review copy provided by the publisher
It's bursting with berries and beans and potatoes
and tall, twining vines of too many tomatoes.
Somebody bring me some bread, salt and pepper, and mayonnaise quick! A young grandson celebrates the bounty of his grandparents's garden in this charming ballad to a favorite food source. When sprouts appear above ground, the boy dances with delight. Soon, vines are all over the place hanging with tasty treats both red and yellow. As the family heads to the farmer's market, tomatoes are spotted on trains and the back of a tow truck. After selling at the market, it's time for a whirlwind of tomato gifting. The teacher, the tailor, the scientist, and the sailor all receive a tomato. With a seemingly never ending supply, why not have a parade? A marching band in, what else, tomato red uniforms, celebrates the fruition of garden labors. The grandparents and the boy tote tomatoes while the band plays on.
Mater mania running wild will make for an enjoyable read aloud in your classroom. With the rhymes, you can touch on phonemic awareness. Too Many Tomatoes is also full of rich parts of speech. Vivid verbs and abundant adjectives will invigorate the pencils of young writers. If you have a plant and/or foods unit, this book needs to be a part of it. Spring is just around the corner, so celebrate the joy of keeping a garden with Too Many Tomatoes.