E-I-E-I-O!: How Old MacDonald Got His Farm with a Little Help from a Hen

illus. by Matthew Myers. 32p. Candlewick. Feb. 2014. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9780763660437. LC 2013934306.
PreS-Gr 2—Most children know about Old MacDonald and his animals, but did they ever wonder how he got that farm? Sierra imagines a rollicking suburban scenario that starts when MacDonald gets tired of mowing the lawn and begins to seek out creative alternatives. A grass-nibbling goat is joined by the "smartest hen in history," and the fun begins. The lawn is covered with cardboard and dirt, a horse arrives to help create compost, and the seeds of the farm are planted. Myers's illustrations capture the fun with expressive animals and grumpy, bow-tied neighbors. This title offers a great way to extend the song into a lesson about the plant cycle and suburban farming. An excellent purchase for general collections as well as curriculum support.—Martha Link Yesowitch, Charlotte Mecklenburg Library, NC
Who knew that Old MacDonald's farm started with a lawnmower-replacing (but hedge-eating) goat and "the smartest hen in history"? Using catchy rhymes and cartoon-silly illustrations (neighbors' protest signs include "Grass smells better" and "This is still weird"), the cheerful book chronicles how Mac transformed his suburban backyard into a garden through composting and became the proprietor of an organic produce cart.

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