I was hesitant to share today’s book, to be honest. Sharing this book is like telling everyone in town about you favorite hole-in-the-wall restaurant, or vintage shop that no one knows about. If everyone starts buying there, it won’t be the same for you. In hopes that these books (that are out of publishing) don’t all disappear onto your shelves, I introduce you to Ali Mitgutsch’s Start to Finish book series for children, and of special note today:
Topic: The process of producing a loaf of bread from start to finish.
Age: Preschool and up
Text load: Simple sentences, several per picture.
Written in the 70s by German author Ali Mitgutsch, these Start to Finish books don’t have all the glitz and color of modern books, and I find it rather refreshing. They are simple children’s books on the processes of producing commodities we likely all take for granted, but of course many kids have questions about!
From Grain to Bread chronicles the process of planting wheat seeds, the growth of the plant to produce wheat kernels,
the harvesting process, then the milling of wheat into flour
and ultimately producing the bread that is so commonly enjoyed by so many.
Things I love about this book:
- I love the topics that are covered in the Start to Finish books. They are the sort of things we experience every day of our lives, but might not know how they got to us. These books are for kids, but I want to read these titles as much as my little girl!
- The magic of these books is not in the art (though the images are endearing), it is the words. Ali Mitgutsch exercises great skill in breaking down complex processes into remarkably digestible and entertaining words for very young readers, all the while still introducing them to new concepts and vocabulary – wheat kernels, the difference between white and wheat flours, combines, flour mills, etc.
- Best of all, these books are easy to weave into our lives. Rather than just sit on the couch and read these books, you can use them as a tool in hands-on learning. We have this one to accompany our sewing, and the book in this review puts our baking into context.
Other Start to Finish titles that might pique your interest include:
From Blossom to Honey
From Cacao Bean to Chocolate
From Beet to Sugar
From Grass to Butter
From Sea to Salt
From Cotton to Pants
From Clay to Bricks
From Tree to Table
From Wood to Paper
From Sand to Glass
And SO MANY more fascinating titles like these that you can find on Amazon as well.
Nurtured by Nature Booklist: Enchanting Children with the Wonder of the Outdoors is a weekly feature here at Budding Homestead. Every Thursday, I review a children’s book from the category of gardening, nature, farming, the outdoors, and such other topics that keep the magic of this more simple life alive in us all. Each review is linked to an ever-increasing list of awesomeness on the Nurtured by Nature Booklist page found in the sidebar.