In this picture book, a little girl and a polar bear love marshmallows.
Amelia is a girl with light brown skin, big brown eyes, and wavy dark hair. Her best friend, Paco, is three times Amelia’s size, with white fur, a large black nose, and expressive eyes. On the story’s first page, readers see a drawing of the polar bear on Amelia’s bedroom rug. The pals are down to their last marshmallow, and Paco gives it to the girl to eat. Then Amelia has a brainstorm: “Paco, I have the best idea ever!…If you plant an apple seed, a tree full of apples will grow. So, let’s plant a marshmallow tree! I already know how to do it.” Paco is skeptical but he digs a hole; Amelia plants their last marshmallow, and they cover it with soil and wait. Nothing. They try watering the soil and giving it sugar. Finally, Amelia remembers that plants need love to grow, so the two friends sing to the marshmallow and tell jokes until suddenly it sprouts into a huge tree.
Bertran’s full-page illustrations are bold and colorful and show the whole day, with stars filling the evening sky as Amelia and Paco hope their tree will materialize. Gamarra’s engaging story begins and ends in Amelia’s bedroom, so the sense of her fantasy world is bookended by tangible clues about her big imagination. Paco remains charming and lovable even when he gets “hangry” waiting for the tree to sprout.
A sweet tale about a child’s wild imagination.
Reviewed by Jennifer Ibiam for Readers' Favorite
Amelia had a polar bear best friend named Paco. The duo loved sweets and always dreamed of beautiful adventures. One fateful day, they ran out of their tasty marshmallows with only one piece left. The friends brainstormed on how to get more marshmallows, and an idea struck. The previous week, Amelia learned how to grow apple trees at school, and it was time to replicate the lessons. They planted a piece of marshmallow and went through all the steps Amelia knew. Amelia and Paco waited for a while, but there were no sprouts. The friends then watered and fed the soil to no avail until Amelia employed a last resort. What did Amelia do, and did her marshmallow tree grow? Read How To Grow A Marshmallow Tree written by Stefanie Gamarra and illustrated by Mark Bertran for details.
How To Grow A Marshmallow Tree by Stefanie Gamarra is a fun and educative book for toddlers. This picture book has many nuggets that will help children shape their outlook on life. The book taught kindness and selflessness as Paco handed Amelia the last piece of marshmallow. Amelia also refused to eat it but tried multiplying it so there would be enough for them. The picture book will help children learn determination and a never-give-up attitude. Amelia stuck to her conviction, explored all parameters, and succeeded. Little ones will also understand the love, patience, attention, and care spent planting crops. Teachers and parents can read this storybook before practical planting lessons for kids. I loved the simple English, appealing pictures, and conciseness.