I AM FARMER: Growing an Environmental Movement in Cameroon

by Baptiste and Miranda Paul and illustrated by Elizabeth Zunon

I am honoured today to take part in the 6th annual Multicultural Children’s Book Day as a book reviewer. It is my 5th time reviewing a book for this event and every year I am encouraged by the growth and by all the passionate, diverse authors who are beginning to fill our shelves with a wide array of stories. If you are interested in my past reviews, I will leave links at the bottom of the page but for now on to this year’s book. Pick up a PDF Book KWL Chart as well to use with this book or any others.

I am Farmer: Growing an Environment Movement in Cameroon by Baptiste and Miranda Paul is a non-fiction title that introduces readers to a number of different topics, including clean water issues in Cameroon, how one person can make a difference in the lives of others, and sustainable farming. The book details the rise of the environmental gardener, Farmer Tantoh, from mocked child to a respected, inspiring environmental leader in Cameroon. When Farmer Tantoh became sick with typhoid fever from unclean drinking water, it led him to learn how to access and collect clean drinking water for villages in Cameroon which resulted in him saving many lives. He positively changes the lives of many people and has even set up a non-profit organization, Save Your Future Association, to collect supplies and money to help other villages access clean water.

The illustrations of the book help bring his story to life and show the contrast between the dry/drought of Cameroon and the beauty and bounty that are possible there. The writing is clever in phrases such as:

When he begins school, Tantoh drinks up facts and figures faster than his teacher can pour them onto the chalkboard. His hand shoots up like a cornstalk.

Imagery created here matches his passion.

Throughout the story, the reader learns of proverbs that Farmer Tantoh used to motivate himself and those around him. One example is:

When you don’t have what you want, use what you have.

When the resources were limited, as he did not have access to tractors, irrigation systems, or motorized tillers to bring clean water to the village, he used the resources he did have, the people of the village to help him. This quote below from Farmer Tantoh encourages all of us to do simple things to improve our world.

The book would fit nicely as a resource for any classroom looking at topics such as:

  • clean water issues
  • environmental impacts of local gardening and farming
  • the power of 1 individual to bring about positive change for many
  • following one’s dreams and passions
  • proverbs

This book is to be released in February of 2019 published by Millbrook Press, a division of Lerner Publishing Group.

I hope you have enjoyed this review and I encourage you to check out all of the information below about Multicultural Children’s Book Day.  There are so many new titles to discover!


Please feel free to download this worksheet to use with this book or others in your classroom.

Click on the image 

Multicultural Children’s Book Day 2019 (1/25/19) is in its 6th year and was founded by Valarie Budayr from Jump Into A Book and Mia Wenjen from PragmaticMom. Our mission is to raise awareness of the ongoing need to include kids’ books that celebrate diversity in homes and school bookshelves while also working diligently to get more of these types of books into the hands of young readers, parents, and educators.

MCBD 2019 is honored to have the following Medallion Sponsors on board

Medallion Level Sponsors

Honorary: Children’s Book Council, The Junior Library Guild, TheConsciousKid.org.

Super Platinum: Make A Way Media

GOLD: Bharat Babies, Candlewick Press, Chickasaw Press, Juan Guerra and The Little Doctor / El doctorcito, KidLitTV,  Lerner Publishing Group, Plum Street Press,

SILVER: Capstone Publishing, Carole P. Roman, Author Charlotte Riggle, Huda Essa, The Pack-n-Go Girls,

BRONZE: Charlesbridge Publishing, Judy Dodge Cummings, Author Gwen Jackson, Kitaab World, Language Lizard – Bilingual & Multicultural Resources in 50+ Languages, Lee & Low Books, Miranda Paul and Baptiste Paul, Redfin, Author Gayle H. Swift,  T.A. Debonis-Monkey King’s Daughter, TimTimTom Books, Lin Thomas, Sleeping Bear Press/Dow Phumiruk, Vivian Kirkfield,

MCBD 2019 is honored to have the following Author Sponsors on board

Honorary: Julie Flett, Mehrdokht Amini,

Author Janet Balletta, Author Kathleen Burkinshaw, Author Josh Funk, Chitra Soundar, One Globe Kids – Friendship Stories, Sociosights Press and Almost a Minyan, Karen Leggett, Author Eugenia Chu, CultureGroove Books, Phelicia Lang and Me On The Page, L.L. Walters, Author Sarah Stevenson, Author Kimberly Gordon Biddle, Hayley Barrett, Sonia Panigrah, Author Carolyn Wilhelm, Alva Sachs and Dancing Dreidels, Author Susan Bernardo, Milind Makwana and A Day in the Life of a Hindu Kid, Tara Williams, Veronica Appleton, Author Crystal Bowe, Dr. Claudia May, Author/Illustrator Aram Kim, Author Sandra L. Richards, Erin Dealey, Author Sanya Whittaker Gragg, Author Elsa Takaoka, Evelyn Sanchez-Toledo, Anita Badhwar, Author Sylvia Liu, Feyi Fay Adventures, Author Ann Morris, Author Jacqueline Jules, CeCe & Roxy Books, Sandra Neil Wallace and Rich Wallace, LEUYEN PHAM, Padma Venkatraman, Patricia Newman and Lightswitch Learning, Shoumi Sen, Valerie Williams-Sanchez and Valorena Publishing, Traci Sorell, Shereen Rahming, Blythe Stanfel, Christina Matula, Julie Rubini, Paula Chase, Erin Twamley, Afsaneh Moradian, Claudia SchwamLori DeMonia, Terri Birnbaum/ RealGirls Revolution, Soulful Sydney, Queen Girls Publications, LLC

We’d like to also give a shout-out to MCBD’s impressive CoHost Team who not only hosts the book review link-up on celebration day, but who also works tirelessly to spread the word of this event. View our CoHosts HERE.

Co-Hosts and Global Co-Hosts

A Crafty Arab, Agatha Rodi Books, All Done Monkey, Barefoot Mommy, Biracial Bookworms, Books My Kids Read, Crafty Moms Share, Colours of Us, Discovering the World Through My Son’s Eyes, Descendant of Poseidon Reads, Educators Spin on it,  Growing Book by Book, Here Wee Read, Joy Sun Bear/ Shearin Lee, Jump Into a Book, Imagination Soup, Jenny Ward’s Class, Kid World Citizen, Kristi’s Book Nook, The Logonauts, Mama Smiles, Miss Panda Chinese, Multicultural Kid Blogs, Raising Race Conscious Children, Shoumi Sen, Spanish Playground

TWITTER PARTY Sponsored by Make A Way Media!

MCBD’s super-popular (and crazy-fun) annual Twitter Party will be held 1/25/19 at 9:00pm.E.S.T. TONS of prizes and book bundles will be given away during the party. GO HERE for more details.

We will be giving away Book Bundles every 5 minutes!

Twitter Party Details:

When: Friday, January 25th

Time: 9 pm to 10 pm EST

Where: On Twitter! Follow McChildsBookDay to participate

Hashtag: #ReadYourWorld

Sponsored By: Make A Way Media


Free Multicultural Books for Teachers: https://wp.me/P5tVud-1H

Free Empathy Classroom Kit for Homeschoolers, Organizations, Librarians, and Educators: http://multiculturalchildrensbookday.com/teacher-classroom-empathy-kit/

Hashtag: Don’t forget to connect with us on social media and be sure and look for/use our official hashtag #ReadYourWorld.

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Bonnie Dani

Bonnie Dani

Bonnie is an admitted book, planner, craft, coffee and chocoholic. She loves sharing her passion for books, journaling, mindfulness, meditation, crafting and gaining confidence in developing our creative souls. Former high school teacher now she is the creator and owner of Adalinc to Life Blog.