Children's Literature - Gayle Hall-Christensen
A warm appreciation of all that goes into bread as the staff of life is presented in a visual feast that can be enjoyed by readers of all ages. A simple, charming song "El Pan Es Para Comer" (Bread is to Eat) is woven into the text, which takes a look at the planting and the growing of grain as well as the people who labor to produce it, until the book becomes an appreciation of the value of life itself. Rich illustrations bring farmlands and equipment to life. A high mountain range is often visible in the background along with various creatures of the earth: rabbits, birds, wolves and the children and families of the earth's diverse cultures.
School Library Journal - School Library Journal
K-Gr 3-``No tires el pan,''-Don't throw the bread away! a mother sings to her child. She explains, poetically, how wheat is planted, grown, harvested, milled, and baked to loaves of life-giving bread. A little song, ``El pan es para comer'' (music included) accompanies each step in the process. Spanish and English are blended seamlessly with the graceful narrative. Shaw-Smith's heroic-style pictures, filled with rich, glowing reds and yellows, are crammed with disparate details. Tiny railroad trains wind through the landscape of fields and mills. Sacks of flour emerge on assembly lines and pop up in country stores. Scenes are packed in the way of gigantic Mexican murals. Endpapers are a patchwork quilt of tiny vignettes-grains and stalks of wheat, dough rising in bowls, loaves of many shapes, slices of pan spread with butter and jam. The miniatures are repeated and expanded in borders on the double-page spreads. These images, vibrating with life and color, are not to be missed.-Ruth Semrau, formerly at Lovejoy School, Allen, TX
"We thank the seed, earth, sun, and rain for the grain, the beautiful grain, and sing for the bread that gives us life again and again and again." From seed to table, Mamita explains how bread is created and celebrates its goodness by singing a short and simple Spanish song, "El pan es para comer" ("Bread Is for Eating" ). The music for this original song, along with lyrics in both Spanish and English, is included at the end. Glowing with wheaten tones of gold, the folk artstyle illustrations show the mother and son in their cozy Latin American farmhouse, as well as the cycle that brings bread to tables all over the world. Use as a multicultural, musical lead-in to Russell Hoban's "Bread and Jam for Frances", followed by Dr. Seuss' "Green Eggs and Ham", for a story hour lineup guaranteed to make mouths water and tummies rumble.