BOOK TITLE: Strega Nona’s Harvest
AUTHOR: Tomie dePaola
SUMMARY OF BOOK: Beginning in the spring, Strega Nona meticulously prepares her garden and plants her seeds. Her helper, Big Anthony, thinks she is too fussy and plants his garden less exactly. When they harvest their produce, they have TOO MUCH so they share it with the townspeople. Download this Activity Sheet in PDF.
Ask questions and use what the child already knows to add to the discussion, assisting the child in understanding and enjoying the book.
- If you grow vegetables, talk about what kinds you grow, what you do with them when they’re ready. Do you ever have too much?
- What kind of mood do you think is in this book (happy, sad, serious, funny?)? What gives you that idea?
- When you come across Italian words, you might also try saying them in another language (if you know one). See what you can add to the naming of the vegetables.
- “Why are Strega Nona’s and Anthony’s gardens growing differently? What did they do differently? What the same?”
- Explain the words that may be unfamiliar (compost, manure, sow, clothespin, etc.)
- “Strega Nona is making salad and pasta; what do we do with vegetables?”
- What happens in the very last picture? Is this funny?
- Next time you are at the store, ask your child what vegetables he remembers from the story.
- Visit a real garden or look at seeds in a store or greenhouse.
- Plant a seed together, water it, and watch it grow.
- How can you and your child share like Strega Nona? Discuss the ways that you might be able to share with others.
Compliments of: Alaska Department of Education & Early Development
Created by: Students at the University of Alaska Anchorage