Sadie's Snowy Tu B'Shevat

  • Interest Level: Preschool - Grade 1
  • Reading Level: Grade 1

Sadie wants to plant a tree for Tu B’Shevat. But it’s the middle of winter! Her parents and grandfather assure her that a tree can’t take root in the frozen ground. But with help from brother Ori and Grandma, Sadie learns why the tree-planting holiday is celebrated in winter and finds her own special ways to celebrate it.

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Interest Level Preschool - Grade 1
Reading Level Grade 1
Genre Picture Books
Copyright 2018
Publisher Lerner Publishing Group
Imprint Kar-Ben Publishing ®
Language English
Number of Pages 32
Publication Date 2017-12-19
Text Type Fiction
BISACS JUV017090, JUV029000, JUV033020
Dewey [E]
Graphics Full-color illustrations
Dimensions 10.625 x 8.875
Lexile 520
Features Author/Illustrator biography, Original artwork, and Reviewed

Author: Jamie Korngold

Rabbi Jamie S. Korngold received ordination from the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion and is the founder and spiritual leader of the Adventure Rabbi Program. She lives in Boulder, Colorado with her two daughters, Sadie and Ori.

Illustrator: Julie Fortenberry

Julie Fortenberry is an abstract painter and a children's book illustrator. She has a Master of Fine Arts from Hunter College in New York, and lives in Philadelphia.


Association of Jewish Libraries

“Sadie (Sadie’s Sukkah Breakfast, Sadie and the Big Mountain, Sadie and Ori and the Blue Blanket, and more) returns in her seventh book to educate us about the holiday of Tu B’Shevat. Sadie wants to plant a tree to celebrate Tu B’Shevat. She gets a shovel, finds the perfect spot in the yard, and digs a big hole – through a mountain of snow! Asking her mom to help her plant ‘a young sapling,’ she learns that she can’t plant a tree in the winter. ‘It will freeze,’ says her mom. ‘It can’t live,’ says her dad. ’Its roots won’t be able to grow,’ says her Grandpa. When her brother, Ori, offers to help her plant a tree, they go outside, and ‘plant’ a beautiful tree out of snow and branches. Grandma provides the hot chocolate to drink as they sing ‘Happy Tu B’Shevat’ to the tree. She then explains to Sadie and Ori that while it is winter where they live, it is spring in Israel [the date is mentioned in the Talmud as the time the sap begins to flow], and spring is the perfect time to plant trees. Grandma goes on to share a story from her own childhood about planting parsley seed in winter to use at the Passover Seder in the spring. Sadie and Ori proceed to follow the steps – get a shovel (spoon), a sapling (parsley seeds), and a special spot (the windowsill). Two months later, their ‘trees’ are ready for the Seder. The watercolor-style illustrations are soft and pastel in tone and clearly reflect the cold winter season. In addition, Sadie’s subtle facial expressions reflect her excitement at wanting to plant a tree and her disappointment upon learning that it is not going to happen. The illustrations of Sadie having fun with the large tree of her imagination are delightful. The back of the book has a short paragraph about the holiday of Tu B’Shevat. Here, rather than a story about trees and ecology, this wonderful title provides the Jewish background for the holiday along with a fun activity to do with the kids.” – Association of Jewish Libraries

Jewish Book Council

“Sadie is eager to celebrate Tu B’Shevat, the birthday of the trees, by planting a tree in her backyard—even though the ground is covered in snow. Undeterred, she digs and digs, while beautifully illustrated visions of a magnificent tree—wearing the season-appropriate leaves of spring, summer, and fall—dance in her head. But once Sadie understands why winter is not the time for planting, she embraces a new idea: she and her little brother, Ori (who is featured along with Sadie in six other titles) build and decorate a snow tree. And then, at Grandma’s suggestion, they enthusiastically plant parsley seeds, carefully care for the little plant, and use the parsley during Passover. This gentle story of determination enriched by sweet and whimsical pictures. A note at the end explains that in Israel the Hebrew month of Shevat announces the start of spring.Recommended for ages 4 to 8.” – Jewish Book Council