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Patty's Pumpkin Patch

Patty's Pumpkin Patch
written and illustrated by Teri Sloat
Putnam, 1999

Available in paperback from Scholastic!

• Trumpet Book Club
• Scholastic Book Club
• Notable Science Trade Book


School Library Journal: This book will be a definite hit with those who have the opportunity to select their own Halloween pumpkins, but even children who have never set foot on such a farm can share the experience through the vivid illustrations done in acrylic and oil pastel…Sloat's work will be enjoyed by older viewers as well as their young siblings.

Cincinnati Enquirer: Readers follow a pumpkin patch's life and get a lesson in the ABC's to boot. Illustrated letters at the bottom of each page depict animals, insects and the patch's world of life from A to Z. Above each letter are bright acrylic paintings of the ever-changing garden. The jaunty rhyming text is simple and cheery.

SF Chronicle Book Review: The alphabetically unfolding critters—ant, beetle, crow, dragonfly…all the way up to the yellow jacket and zebra butterfly, remind us that a pumpkin patch is crowded habitat even before customers pull up in their cars.

Bulletin for the Center of Children's Books: One of those books that rank high on the useful scale; pumpkin patchers and parents will happily embrace it.

Booklist: Sloat's rhymes will attract even the most squirmy kids.

About the Book

Patty is my cousin and she is two years older than I am, so we were not great friends while we were growing up. She always knew more, and she'd already done everything by the time I did it. She could play the piano and she had boyfriends first and we were together—a lot.

One of the things she did not like to do was to work in the family garden that was planted between her house and our grandparent's house. She did not like getting her hands dirty. I didn't mind it at all and was fascinated with plants that grew and with the animals around the garden. We have pumpkin patches all around us where we live, and I still love the idea that when you look at a garden or pumpkin patch you are looking at the home of so many animals.

Pat and I are still growing up, but we are close friends now. Can you imagine how surprised I was a few years ago to find out that she and her husband raised pigs, and she loved those pigs? Let's see—Patty's Pigs…how would that be? (With all the pigs she's raised, it should be a counting book, I think.)

Teacher Activities

  • Create a pumpkin alphabet where the letters are cut from the pumpkin.
  • Create a rhyming story about other vegetables, e.g. teeny-weeny zucchini.
  • Have a giant pumpkin contest, based on circumference, as well and weight and height.
  • Plant pumpkin seeds and see how they sprout.
  • Visit a pumpkin patch and have the students keep a journal of all the different animals that they see.
  • Tell the story that goes with each letter in Patty's Pumpkin Patch with one word, e.g. plowing.



© Teri Sloat 2006