A self-professed bibliophile, one of my favorite things to do is read books with my niece. Last night, we read E-I-E-I-O! How Old MacDonald Got His Farm (With a Little Help from A Hen), written by Judy Sierra and illustrated by Matthew Myers. Think of this wonderfully written and beautifully illustrated tale as a prequel to the much-beloved “Old MacDonald Had a Farm” nursery rhyme. In E-I-E-I-O! How Old MacDonald Got His Farm (With a Little Help from A Hen), we start out with Old MacDonald and his ordinary house and yard, and with the help of a clever hen, we watch Old MacDonald’s yard become a bountiful garden. Old MacDonald’s story starts with a goat and ends with a beautiful garden cart full of local produce for the neighborhood. My niece was so engaged with the story, and asked questions along the way; it was wonderful to watch her get excited about the story’s progression. Written in entertaining rhyme, author Judy Sierra tells this tale and teaches children along the way, touching on topics ranging from sustainability, buying local, composting, and even neighborhood politics (and a few funny illustrations that adults will find amusing alongside their child). This book really packs a punch!

I would highly recommend sharing this heartwarming story with your children, siblings, grandchildren, nieces, nephews, cousins, and classes. Great as a standalone read, it can also be part of any discussion about fresh food, sustainability, or buying local.

E-I-E-I-O! How Old MacDonald Got His Farm (With a Little Help from A Hen) is available via the author’s website, in book stores and on Amazon.

EIEIO: How Old MacDonald Got His Farm with a Little Help from a Hen