Rosmarie Hausherr's What Food Is This?
Children's book review by Steve Barancik
It's an unfortunate statement about our culture's eating habits that this book has been allowed to go out of print. (Keep reading though! It's available used. And you might want to let the old publisher know that you'd like to see the book back in print.)
Author-photographer Hausherr puts together an appealing book with lots of great food facts. Is your child a "fact sponge"? Use it to your advantage by giving this book a permanent place in your library.
Hausherr has a lot to teach about fruits and vegetables, and - bless her! - nothing to share about potato chips. Here's the philosophy that guides her:
The foods we eat which give us strength, health, and joy, are given to us from living plants and animals. By treating our earth's resources with respect, we can show our gratitude for nature's generosity.
Amen. Here's her approach...
Every right-hand page contains a question, such as, "What food comes from grass than an animal has eaten?" Above the question: a color photo of a kid who is too cute for words posing with the food that happens to be the answer.
the page to find all the fun facts you could want about the food, along
with a black & white picture of the food in its growth environment.
The description of every food is filled with italicized words that reference words in the glossary. This book is a great vocabulary booster!
More info follows with an in-depth look at the Food Guide Pyramid, and it all finishes with a page called "Good Nutrition: What Parents Can Do."
(If your child can read the rest of the book, he/she can read this. Then won't you be pleased when he/she comes with you to the grocery store and orders you to make healthier choices!)
While What Food Is This? could be a read-aloud, it is probably best used with young and voracious eaters, I mean, readers. It's a great tool to get them to sell themselves on healthy eating.
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