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by Jan Dobbins ; illustrated by Laura Huliska-Beith

Age Range: 3 - 5

Pub Date: April 1st, 2013
ISBN: 978-1-84686-790-3
Publisher: Barefoot

A romantic view of the working life of a busy farm is conveyed in a series of irregularly metered three-line rhyming verses followed by a jaunty refrain.

“Down in the paddock, we check the water trough. / The horses are thirsty; have they got enough? / Turn on the hosepipe. Whoosh! Now turn it off. / 1,2,3, it’s a farmer’s life for me.” From milking cows to gathering eggs, cherry picking, and tending to pigs, sheep and horses, parents and children cheerily do the work and embrace it with a “1,2,3, it’s a farmer’s life for me.” Young and old work side by side to mow and rake the hay or feed the hungry lambs. Inside the farmhouse, baking a cake and cutting it into eight slices makes a pleasant afternoon break. Cartoonish art in earthy and summery greens are rendered in gouache and acrylic that is then crafted through digital collage. The art creates an animated atmosphere for this elated group of singing family farmers. Backmatter provides a more informative view on the products resulting from a working farm. An enclosed CD (not heard) presents the text as a song performed by the Flannery Brothers; the written music is also included.

An idealized view of farm life; for a more artistic approach, see Nancy Tafuri’s This Is the Farmer (1994) or Elizabeth Spurr’s Farm Life, illustrated by Steve Björkman (2003). (Picture book. 3-5)