When Grandma Gives You a Lemon Tree
When Grandma Gives You a Lemon Tree

When Grandma Gives You a Lemon Tree

Written by Jamie L. B. Deenihan & illustrated by Lorraine Rocha
Part of the When Grandma Gives You a Lemon Tree Book Series
3 - 8
Reading age
Page count
Words per page
Lexile measure
Mar 5, 2019
Publication date

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A simple, undesired gift leads to life-changing lessons about the satisfaction of working to accomplish goals and the fulfillment of being in nature.

When grandma shows up to her granddaughter’s birthday not with an item on the wishlist—like a robot dog or a phone—but instead with a lemon tree, her granddaughter does her best to graciously accept the gift rather than let it float away with her birthday balloons. But like a wise master with an ambitious student, there’s more to sleepy grandma and her seemingly simple gift than originally expected. For as the granddaughter is dutiful in tending to the tree for a year—protecting it from snail invaders and keeping it warm—she begins to experience the satisfaction that comes from responsibility and persistence. And when her efforts are rewarded with a bountiful lemon harvest, grandma is back on hand to help her turn those lemons into money in the girl’s pocket so she can go buy all those gadgets herself. Except by the time she’s at the store, her year of tending to the tree has developed in her a refined love of nature, and readers will be pleasantly surprised by her purchase decisions, which bring together her community in a lovely neighborhood garden. Rocha’s thoughtful illustrations augment Deenihan’s beautiful debut text—attentive readers will note that even the young girl’s friends, who themselves received the tech items on the wishlist, abandon their gadgets for the satisfaction of connecting with nature and community in the garden. Urban dwellers will also appreciate Rocha’s accurate depictions of details of city living, like the young girl’s need to protect the tree from a malfunctioning hydrant.

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What Has Jamie L. B. Deenihan Said About This Book

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Book Details

Publication Date
March 5, 2019
Sterling Childrens Books
Page Count
Words Per Page
Reading Age
3 - 8 years
Lexile® Level
Est. Fountas & Pinnell Level
ATOS® Book Level
Accelerated Reader® Points
Accelerated Reader Quiz
Accelerated Reader Interest Level

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Core Score - 55%

More than halfway there—keep going!

Depth Score - 15%

Just the barebones.

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