written by Mindy Bender-Webster, PreK teacher
In PreK we have a very special tradition. Whenever carrots are served during snack time, we just have to read a book about carrots. Recently, we had carrots twice, which gave us the opportunity to read two books about carrots. In case you aren’t sure, this is a big deal.
On the first day, we read Creepy Carrotsby Aaron Reynolds and, if you’re a fan of the Awakening Seed’s Mystery Theater, you may already be somewhat familiar with this story. When the story began during snack time, students continued to pass around food bowls as they starting listening to the tale of Jasper Rabbit and his love for carrots. Things got serious when we read the line, “Jasper couldn’t get enough carrots…until they started following him,” and suddenly all eyes were on the book. The students remained engaged, crunching carrots when Jasper would crunch carrots and acting surprised when Jasper would act surprised. The suspense paid off with a happy ending and this book got rave reviews from its new fans. In fact, it has since inspired students to build block walls to, “keep the carrots in,” when visiting the building zone. Their creations resembled the wall that Jasper makes almost exactly.
On the second day, we read a different book about carrots. Too Many Carrotsby Katy Hudson is about Rabbit, yet another bunny who has fallen victim to the addictive nature of carrots. His carrot collection is “crowding him out of his cozy burrow” and he needs help. The kids loved sharing their own ideas about how to help Rabbit and found fun in answering the question, “What will happen next?” before each new page. In the end, Rabbit decides that sharing his carrots is the best thing to do. We each ate, or simply touched, a carrot to celebrate the book’s conclusion.
The PreK students are now looking forward to snack days with carrots on the menu, and often chose these books when visiting our library during open centers. We’re pleased to be keeping this tradition alive and are happy that these books are getting these kids excited about healthy foods. We will surely be reading more food themed books during this year’s school-wide nutrition study, but, in the mean time, we’ll be watching our backs for “carrots creeping.”