Math and Science Connections: One Watermelon Seed by Celia Barker Lottridge
This book is useful for:
Math: Counting up to 10, Counting by tens, Counting to 100
Science: Plants, Seeds, Ecosystems
Just a few days ago on one of our trips to the library my son really wanted the book The Watermelon Seed by Greg Pizzoli, but after searching the library’s catalog we realized the book was checked out. That’s when we came across the book One Watermelon Seed by Celia Barker Lottridge. He really enjoyed this new book and it was a great book to use to support math knowledge. I’m glad we found it!
Counting up to 10- The story has 2 children planting a garden. First they add 1 seed, then 2, then 3, and so on. Underneath the text the author writes the numbers in order so they kids see each number being added on sequentially. We pointed to each number as we read them. Since it builds and repeats, it gives a lot of practice saying each number.
Counting by tens- After the children count up to 10 and the seeds grow into a bountiful harvest, the book continues on counting the fruits and vegetables by tens. Once again, the author adds on sequentially. First you see 10, then 10 and 20, then 10, 20, 30 until they reach 100. The numbers are bright and colorful. But, even better, when they reach 80 the author clearly groups the vegetables into groups of 10. For example, when they reach 80 the main character picked eighty string beans. The illustrator clearly shows 8 groups of 10 string beans. You can show your child how this grouping allows to quickly count. They visually see what counting by tens is all about! There is a visual connection to the skill of counting by tens. The numbers 90 and 100 are also clearly grouped by tens.
Counting up to 100- There are like a gazillion books that count from 1 to 10. But it is always nice to find books that count higher. This book does count up to 100 however, after 10 it does not count every single number up to 100. As mentioned, it begins counting by tens after it reaches 10. If you wanted to count the ears of the corn at the end of the book, there are 100 of them! You could have them count the corn to practice their numbers up to 100.
Teaching tip: If you are counting the objects in the picture with your child, encourage them to point to each object as they count or if they are very young you can point and count. One of the earliest math skills kids learn is “one to one correspondence”. One to one correspondence is the understanding that you only count an object one time. This takes time to learn. Have you ever seen a child count three objects and say there are five because s/he counted two things more than once? That child is learning one to one correspondence. Keep practicing pointing and counting an object only one time when your child is interested and they will pick up this skill.
Seed and Plants: When the children plant the seeds and the plants begin to grow, the illustrator shows the roots growing in the ground and the sprouts growing up. It’s a very good visual for seeing the parts of the plant. In the book, we also see the children watering the plants and weeding the garden. This can create discussion on what plants need to live and how to care for them. You can ask the child, “Why do we weed the garden?”
Ecosystems: There are great illustrations that can spark discussion. You also see worms digging tunnels in the dirt, a bird with a worm in its mouth, bugs in the air and on the ground, etc. Encourage your child to think about how the living and non living elements help each other.
Looking for another great book that counts to 100?
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1 2 3 Peas by Keith Baker is incredible!
You can count each and every pea individually. And when you are on the final page, each pea holds up its number so you can count and see each number from 1 to 100 also! This is one of my new favorite books!