Reviews for Our Farm : Four Seasons With Five Kids on One Family's Farm


Horn Book Guide Reviews 2009 Spring
This "photographic journal" documents seasons on a working farm in central Ohio. The five Bennett kids provide anecdotes on everything from building forts in the hayloft to artificially inseminating cows. Tiny type accommodates the exhaustive interviews but is hard to read; photographs beautifully capture the family's balance of work and play. An index would have helped readers better navigate the text. Websites. Copyright 2008 Horn Book Guide Reviews.

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School Library Journal Reviews 2008 September

Gr 3-7-- Through this photographic journal, readers are invited to share one year on an Ohio farm, complete with children, animals, and enough work, adventure, and fun to keep everyone busy. Keeping his commentary to a minimum, Rosen records conversations and comments made mostly by the young Bennetts. Their voices are strong and wise, revealing knowledge about life, death, hunting, reproduction, economics, and the importance of community and family. "If a cow dies, Dad scoops it up with a skid steer bucket and carries it over to the woods, far from the house, because it stinks for a while," 10-year-old Cayne observes matter-of-factly. "We always have a fort up in the hayloft, but…the cows eventually eat the whole fort" (Grey, age 8). "It [corralling cows] can be dangerous…" Chase (15) explains, "…but cows prefer to kick to the side; you're usually safe so long as you're straight behind them." Sensitive to the fact that some people might consider them "a bunch of farm hicks," Chase points out that his school "has scored among the top Ohio schools in the proficiency tests." More comprehensive than Raymond Bial's Portrait of a Farm Family (Houghton, 1995), this engaging book is an unsentimental, appreciative look into the world of one farm family. It's packed with information and plenty of interesting photographs. Children will love it.--Lee Bock, Glenbrook Elementary School, Pulaski, WI

[Page 211]. Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.

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VOYA Reviews 2008 October
A year in the life of Ohio farm living is told through anecdotes from the members of the Bennett family, five young people ranging in age from four to seventeen and their parents. After an introduction to the family members, the book is structured by the seasons detailing the life on this working farm that grows crops and raises animals. The realities of farm life are presented in a matter-of-fact way. The youth explain a wide range of topics including the farm animals and pets, the many chores, the process of breeding the animals, and how they balance work on the farm with school and fun. This book would be particularly valuable for students who lack exposure to rural life. Color pictures are generously sprinkled throughout the book to complement the text. At times, it seem as if the anecdotes being told were not necessarily in the voices of the children but edited versions of what they might have said. Although that discrepancy in voice makes it difficult to distinguish which person is which, it actually helps the flow of the book to have the voices written similarly. The book would prove difficult as a research tool as there is no index, but it is written in such a way that makes it easy to read a portion of the book for information, and it provides valuable insight into what daily life is like on a farm.-Erin Wyatt Photos. Further Reading. 3Q 3P M J Copyright 2008 Voya Reviews.

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