The Bee Tree

( 3 )

Overview

When Mary Ellen gets bored with her reading, Grandpa knows a hunt for a bee tree is just what she needs. Half the town joins the exciting chase, but it's not until everyone returns home that Mary Ellen makes a discovery of her own: Sometimes, even the sweetest of things must be worked for. 'Polacco has created another charming picture book featuring a child learning from a grandparent in an idyllic pastoral setting-Both the writing and artwork are fresh and inviting.' ? School Library Journal, starred review ?The...

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Overview

When Mary Ellen gets bored with her reading, Grandpa knows a hunt for a bee tree is just what she needs. Half the town joins the exciting chase, but it's not until everyone returns home that Mary Ellen makes a discovery of her own: Sometimes, even the sweetest of things must be worked for. 'Polacco has created another charming picture book featuring a child learning from a grandparent in an idyllic pastoral setting-Both the writing and artwork are fresh and inviting.' ? School Library Journal, starred review ?The newest gem from Polacco's treasure chest of family stories extols the virtue of reading-and of taking a study break.'Like Mary Ellen, readers will emerge refreshed from this respite, ready to seek out new adventures.' ? Publishers Weekly ?Young readers will savor this.??— The Horn Book Patricia Polacco lives in Union City, MI.

To teach his daughter the value of books, a father leads a growing crowd in search of the tree where the bees keep all their honey.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
The newest gem from Polacco's treasure chest of family stories extolls the virtues of reading--and of taking a study break. Young Mary Ellen would rather be ``outdoors running and playing'' than indoors with a book. Sympathetic to her feelings, her grandfather suggests that they find a bee tree. The Michigan woods literally buzz with activity as Mary Ellen and Grampa chase a pollen-laden bee to its far-off hive, picking up curious neighbors and passers-by along the way. Before long the original pair becomes a ``thundering stampede of goats, buggies, people and bikes'' in search of honey. Polacco's rollicking text provides a bubbly, adventurous tone for her cumulative romp. Boisterous color brings to life the characters' old-fashioned garb and the unspoiled lushness of the rural 19th-century setting. Fine pencil detail highlights stray pieces of hair blown back by the breeze, and the joy and determination on the faces of the honey hunters. Like Mary Ellen, readers will emerge refreshed from this respite, ready to seek out new adventures. Ages 4-8. (Apr.)
Children's Literature - Marilyn Courtot
Mary Ellen decides that she is tired of reading and that she loves being outside and would like to spend all of her time running and playing rather than be indoors reading a book. Grandfather releases a couple of bees and suggests that they go find a bee tree. Thus the adventure begins. It's a lesson about these fascinating insects, as well as a reminder that there is a place and time for reading and for taking time to commune with nature. The illustrations are particularly vibrant and in Polacco's unmistakable style.
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2-- Polacco has created another charming picture book featuring a child learning from a grandparent in an idyllic pastoral setting. Mary Ellen complains that she is tired of reading. Her grandfather replies that ``. . . this is just the right time to find a bee tree!'' They chase bees through the Michigan countryside, are soon joined, a la ``The Gingerbread Man,'' by a number of bystanders, and are finally led to the hive. At the end of the story, Grampa drops a bit of honey on a book's cover and tells Mary Ellen to compare its sweetness to that which is found inside: ``Just like we ran after the bees to find their tree, so you must also chase these things adventure, knowledge, and wisdom through the pages of a book!'' While the message may not be as emotionally resonant as the themes found in Thunder Cake (Philomel, 1990) or Babushka's Doll (S. & S., 1990), both the writing and artwork are fresh and inviting. There is a marvelous specificity to the names and places found within the story, and the pacing is appropriately reckless. The double-page spreads are done in Polacco's distinctive multimedium style and are beautifully composed. Her use of white space sets off the clear yet unusual colors. Well worth pursuing. --Lauralyn Persson, Wilmette Public Library, IL
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780698116962
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 5/28/1998
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 42,307
  • Age range: 5 - 8 Years
  • Lexile: AD680L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 7.98 (w) x 10.28 (h) x 0.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Patricia Polacco
Patricia Polacco
Patricia Polacco lives in Union City, Michigan.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 3 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Posted March 1, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    The sweetness of reading

    When a little girl wants to be up and doing instead of reading her lesson, her grandfather takes her outside to find a 'bee tree', a tree in which bees have made their honey. He starts by catching some bees and then releasing one at a time to follow to their nest. The chase picks up a lot of excited people, so there is a crowd to enjoy a feast of honey eventually. But then Grandpa shows the girl the sweetness of books, too.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 16, 2007

    Let's go to the Bee Tree

    If you don¿t like reading, read this book and go to a bee tree. This will sweeten up your reading. This book tells you, if you don¿t like reading try to make it fun. In the book, Mary Ellen doesn¿t like reading and her grandpa suggests going to a bee Tree! On their way to the bee tree a bunch of people stop by and tag along. When they got to the bee tree they had a lot of honey. They had so much honey they threw a party! Everybody who tagged along came and they had a party with honey flavored foods. I really enjoyed this book so I think you will too.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 23, 2007

    The Bee Tree

    This story is very good and if you don¿t want to read then go to a bee tree and sweeten up your book and read it some more!! If you like to read but sometimes you get tired of reading, than this book would be perfect for you!! In this story Patricia Polacco really brings out the characters old fashioned look!! If you read this book you can really picture the book even though there are already pictures in the story! Maybe you can follow bees to their bee tree and do the sane thing Mary Ellen did!! I can¿t believe all those people followed Mary Ellen and her grandfather just to get to a bee tree!! I bet Mary Ellen and her grandfather had a lot of honey for the party afterwards!! If you read this book I hope you will like it just like I did!!!

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