Illustrations © Thor Wickstrom

Field Trip Day

by Lynn Plourde Illustrated by Thor Wickstrom Dutton Children’s Books, 2010

It was Field Trip Day.
Everyone in Mrs. Shepherd’s class was anxious
to visit a farm, especially . . .

Juan Dore-Nomad.

Juan knew that some of his best learning
didn’t always happen at school,
but during adventures out in the real world.

Farmer Fandangle’s Organic Environmentally Friendly Farm is a grand adventure for Mrs. Shepherd’s class. The only problem is the chaperones keep doing headcounts and coming up with the number 22, but there are TWENTY-THREE students in Mrs. Shepherd’s class! Who’s missing? You guessed it—Juan! He just can’t help himself as he wanders off to see what the cows eat so they can give organic milk and to find the source of power for the henhouse contraptions (windmills!). At the end of the farm field trip, it’s not Juan who’s missing, but two of Farmer Fandangle’s calves! Where could they be? Can anyone find them?

Reviews

(I)t’s a peek at a life not often seen in picture books, and that will be appreciated by both kids and adults . . . the pictures of iconic farmyard scenes and racially diverse kids busily exploring have a pleasant, energetic feel, and the classroom-reading appeal is strong. 
Booklist

Juan Dore-Nomad, inquirer par excellence, stars in this sixth installment about Mrs. Shepherd's class. Whereas the other episodes occur within school walls, this one showcases the learning implicit in a field trip to an organic farm. Juan's questions lead his class to discover what the farm animals eat, how plants make natural dyes for wool, and how wind turbines power the small farm. Rather than holding up the class, Juan is always just a step ahead, which constantly challenges the adult chaperones. They count heads in sets, by threes, and play with addition as they panic over the missing student, which is always inquisitive Juan, off making more discoveries. This good-natured story . . . will appeal to children, especially those who adore farm animals. The watercolor-and-ink cartoons are lively and depict a diverse class that lauds thinking and questioning over strict rule-keeping. This rollicking . . .  romp into the workings of a modern organic farm will keep young listeners entertained.
School Library Journal

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