Megan Halsey’s book, One Bean, describes the experience of a young boy as he grows a bean. After putting it between wet paper towels the little boy sees it get fat and wrinkled so plants it in a paper cup, watering it when needed until he sprouts. He watches it grow and transplants it to a flowerpot that he puts in the sun so it can grow some more. Eventually the bean forms buds, then flowers, and bean pods that contain beans just like the one he started with. The cycle is complete and the little boy eats some beans.
The text and illustrations are very straightforward and simple, nicely depicting the steps in the life cycle of a bean. The observations of little details like the valentine heart-like first leaves and the spreading of the roots in the moist soil, add to the learning experience. The expectation of actually getting the plant to produce fruit (pods) is probably unrealistic, however, because of the difficulty of pollination indoors. The book ends with suggestions for further activities and more information on beans. Very good introduction for children three to six years old to the life cycle of a plant and the pleasure of close observation.
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