How Martha Saved Her Parents from Green Beans
Dial Books for Young Readers, 2013
FORMAT: Picture Book
AGES: Preschool, Elementary
Martha doesn’t want to eat her green beans at dinner. Her parents keep telling her how wonderful they are, but she really doesn’t want anything to do with them. One night as she is sitting and staring at the cold green beans on her plate (she is supposed to keep sitting there until she eats them even though her parents finished dinner ages ago), she hears a noise. When she goes to the other room she sees a note that the green beans have taken her parents. At first Martha is excited that she can do whatever she wants…but then she starts to miss her parents and she decides that she must save them from the horrible green beans. But the only way to save her parents is to eat the green beans. Of course Martha is up for the challenge…eventually. And the family decides that they won’t eat green beans and will instead have nice vegetables that won’t try to get them…or so they think.
This is a fun story. I thought it would be an amusing tale of how a girl saves her parents by doing something she doesn’t like doing. And it was. But when I read it with my nieces and nephews they kept laughing and laughing over the evil face in the salad at the end of the book. So, even though they loved the story…the idea that vegetables are not always what they seem really made them smile. I loved how the green beans are pictured as a mixed up pirate/cowboy crew. The hats on top of the long green bean bodies and the mustaches are just a hoot. And the fact that they seem as big as people, well that just makes Martha’s task of eating them seem all the more important. Well done!
What to do after reading this book:
Eat some vegetables.
Make a picture of what a food pyramid looks like.
Talk about different foods from around the world.
Make a picture on your plate with some food, then eat it.
Talk about why you like or don’t like certain foods. What is it about them that makes you like or dislike them?