Read and explore Fruits: A Caribbean Counting Poem

Read and explore Fruits

How much fruit do you think one small girl can manage to eat in one day? In the case of the narrator of this counting poem, the answer is a lot! Count from one to ten, learn the names of some Caribbean fruits and then try some more fruit themed activities.


Watch the author Valerie Bloom read her poem:

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  • As you are reading the story together, encourage your child to spot the rhyming words, for example ‘tree’ and ‘me’.
  • Look closely at the pictures in the book and talk about what you can see. Ask questions such as “How does the girl reach the jew-plums?”
  • Talk about the fruit in the poem. Ask your child “Which fruits have you eaten?” or “Are there any fruits in the poem that you would like to try?”
  • Count up to ten using the book to help. Pause the poem at various points and ask your child to work out how many fruits there will be on the next page, explaining that each page has one more piece of fruit than the last. Your child could use their fingers to keep track.
  • Talk about your favourite part of the poem and ask your child to do the same.
  • Go through any words in Caribbean dialect that you might not know, for example ‘Smaddy’ means ‘somebody’ and ‘fe’ means ‘for’. There are also various fruits described in the book, including a guinep, a jackfruit, a jew-plum, a naseberry and a sweet-sop.

Try these activities around Fruits by Valerie Bloom

Fruit play!

Explore some fruit

Talk about your favourite fruit. When your child is eating some fruit, encourage them to talk about what it looks like, feels like, tastes like and smells like. Challenge them to say the sound at the beginning of the name of the fruit. If you have a younger child, you can describe the fruit as they explore it.

Try a new fruit

Go to the supermarket or greengrocer and pick out a fruit that your child hasn’t tried before. Explore the fruit together.

Paint or draw some fruit

Look closely at some fruit and paint or draw a picture of it.

Healthy eating

Talk about how it is important to eat five portions of fruit or vegetables a day. Watch the Five a Day song.

Songs and rhymes

Sing these songs and rhymes about fruit: Oranges and Lemons and Five Little Apples.


Join in with Emma

Play the chatterbag game and have a go at guessing which fruit Emma is describing.


For older children

Write your own fruit salad recipe. Include your favourite fruits and add instructions about peeling and chopping the fruit.

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