Tag Archives: toddler

Ten Little Fingers and Ten Little Toes by Mem Fox and illustrated by Helen Oxenbury

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Apologies for the blurred image Boo was trying to run off with the book see her hand

Somehow this book passed me by the first time I became a parent. I truly don’t know how as it’s a beautiful book.

It was written in 2008 published by Walker Books Ltd the edition we have was published in 2011.

Rosie Rabbit getting ready for bedtime reading

Rosie Rabbit getting ready for bedtime reading

The text has a rhyming repetitive way of taking you through the story of explaining that although babies can be born in various places around the world and although they can each look slightly different they (on the most part) are all the same really as they have ten little fingers and ten little toes.

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Without a very young child knowing about differences around the world it’s a lovely way to introduce this subtly. The book however can grow with the child and could be used as a starting point of discussion suggesting where some of the babies may be from and showing them on a globe for example “there was one little baby born on the ice and another in a tent who was just as nice”.

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Each double spread page has illustrations of two different babies born in different cultures and then the rhyme continues over the page with illustrations of all the babies shown already up to that point with the repetitive rhyme “and both of these babies as everyone knows has ten little fingers and ten little toes”

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Boo who is 20 months loves this book she likes the illustrations of the babies and points to each one saying “baby”. It’s been a lovely way to reinforce where her fingers and toes are as I read it to her I get her to wiggle her fingers and show me her toes.The rhyme is not too energetic so it’s perfect for bedtime.

Our favourite part though which Boo gets excited about is the last few pages and where I do actually kiss her on the nose. The rhyme changes slightly in this part and it focuses on the narrator talking about their own baby;

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“But the next baby born was truly divine, a sweet little child who was mine, all mine. And this little baby as everyone knows, has ten little fingers, ten little toes and three little kisses on the tip of its nose.”

I often change the last bit instead of “tip of its nose” I change it for her I could change it for her name instead although this would change the rhyme perhaps too much.

As I noted earlier Boo likes this book, it has helped her remember which are her fingers and which are her toes and where her nose is and has started pointing them out on her doll too. She likes the illustrations and loves the anticipation of the end and receiving kisses on her nose! I think she would give this 10/10.

I wish I had found this book earlier not just for Boo but for Monkey who was born the year it was published. The book can be used for many starting points of discussion as children grow noticing the different cultures, different landscapes, discussing where in the world they could be from. Explaining all babies are the same no matter where they’re from. It’s a lovely book and would be perfect as a baby shower gift or a gift for a newborn I would therefore give this book 10/10.

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Angelina Ballerina by Katherine Holabird illustrated by Helen Craig

wp-1470895465538.jpgI hadn’t realised the story wasn’t written as recently as I thought having been written in 1983 to many a classic story however I don’t remember having this read to me as a child. The edition we have is a board book published in 2007 by Puffin Books.

The story is about a young mouse called Angelina who wants to be a ballerina however she hasn’t had lessons and she dances all the time when she’s meant to be doing other things such as tidying her room, getting ready for school even dancing around the school yard!

The story continues and I’m sure you can guess what happens, she has ballet lessons and as she has the lessons she doesn’t dance when she’s not meant to be much to the relief of her parents.

I bought this book for Boo for a couple of reasons, after quickly reading the book to myself in the bookshop (love I can do this with young children’s books as they’re not too long) and thought what a lovely story it was.  The illustrations are beautiful and are highly detailed. The cover caught my attention with the little silver hearts and the illustration of a mouse asleep in bed. But the main reason is Boo was given a music box as a present which has a pretty ballerina spinning round and round as the wind up classic music is played she loves it and has tried to copy going round and round many times so thought a book about a ballerina would appeal.

However it doesn’t seem to be the case….yet. I have read the story a few times now to Boo and she’s not very interested. At 20 months I think she’s a little too young for it at the moment as it has a lot of words unlike most of the other stories I’ve read to her recently. The last time I read it to her she got up from sitting on my knee and took the opportunity to play with a full size football of 7 year old Monkey’s while he was out!

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Boo does however like the illustrations which I thought she would as she loves the detailed illustrations in her two Beatrix Potter books.

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At the moment I think Boo would score this 5/10 as she likes the illustrations but the story hasn’t caught her attention yet. I think she will like it more when she’s 2+

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I on the other hand really enjoyed the story. I liked how the story starts with Angelina not having had ballet lessons still practices really hard and also how this can be related to all children who want to busy themselves doing something else instead of what they’re supposed to be doing like tidying their room. I find the illustrations are lovely I have always liked detailed illustrations in children’s books especially reading with an older child where you can ask them to look at the illustrations and point a particular item out. I know this book will grow with Boo and I think I will be asked to read it to her many times repeatedly in the coming years. I will score this 8/10.

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The Very Hungry Caterpillar’s abc by Eric Carle

An abc book which adults will enjoy to look at too

An abc book which adults will enjoy to look at too

Very few people will not know who the character of Eric Carle’s famous book The Very Hungry Caterpillar is which is a childhood favourite of mine. This book explores the abc with help of the hungry caterpillar and lots of animal friends who I believe can be found in several other Eric Carle books.

The book was first published in 2015 by Puffin Books.

The very first page and last page has the letters of the alphabet set out in the same colours and style as you find throughout the book i.e. the letter ‘a’ is red with what looks like finger painted dots.

Each letter of the alphabet has a separate page on white background making a very good visual impact to all who read the book. Under each letter which are all lowercase letters there is a picture of an animal which starts with that particular letter which is then followed by the word of what the picture is, the first letter written the same colourful way as what the letter is first depicted as.

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The alphabet doesn’t just concentrate on the animals most alphabet books have which as an adult certainly makes it more interesting. Below is the list of animals alphabetically used.

Ants

Bird

Caterpillar

Dog

Eagle

Frog

Gull

Horse

Iguana

Lizard

Mouse

Narwhal

Owl

Penguin

Quetzal

Rhino

Snail

Tiger

Unicom

Vulture

Walrus

Xolo

Yak

Zebra

There are a few in the list I’ve not heard of before which makes it interesting to both the adult reader but also perhaps to an older sibling reading the book to their younger brother/sister.

I've never heard of a narwhal have you?

I’ve never heard of a narwhal have you?

Boo is too young to fully appreciate this book yet and yet she recognises the picture of the Dog and bird the rest of the time she points at pages randomly and I tell her the letter, point to the picture and tell her what he picture is of which she enjoys doing a lot at the moment.

Since Boo is too young to review the book properly I have to go on what she thinks of this book compared to others and I have to say this is slowly becoming a favourite of hers, in fact at the weekend I put it in our bag to take out for the day and she happily looked through this book while I read my son’s comic to him. To make it even better my son when he became bored of the comic looked through this book with Boo it was such a lovely sight to see Monkey age 7 explaining to his baby sister Boo age 19 months what all the letters were and pointing out all the beautiful bright colours, I’m sure sure this will only get better as Boo grows so I think she would give this 9/10 at the moment.

I love this book, so many abc books concentrate on the boring and same suggestions such as b for butterfly and s for snake with usually boring illustrations but each illustration is a true piece of art which I would happily display and not necessarily only in a children’s playroom. On the back of the book there’s a website address for information on Eric Carle’s books, information about him, resources, ideas, lots of interesting information on how the illustrations are made – it’s certainly worth a look I was impressed with the amount of information available there. There is also a link to the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art which I would love to visit one day. The website is:
eric-carle.com

I will give this book 10/10 as it will certainly grow with children and can be used for lots of things not just simply learning letters. It could be used to start a conversation, research on the various animals depicted especially the lesser known. The colours of the illustrations can be used for colour recognition. Some children might want to make a story up about the animals to help remember the alphabet. It can also be used as a way to learn how to do collages which is how Eric Carle creates these illustrations. This is just a few ideas I’m sure there are many more, have fun read learn and create.

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Usborne Baby Very First Play Book Animal Words

img_20160223_200413_kindlephoto-5146283.jpgThis book published by Usborne is a lovely lively book of animals for babies and toddlers to enjoy on their own or with parents/older siblings etc

The book was first published in 2016 and was written by Stella Baggott.

The front cover shows various animals and many have shapes cut out of them lovely for little fingers to poke through and makes it easier to turn pages. The fun part though is that for every animal which has a shape cut out of it underneath you can see the colour of the animal underneath the gap for instance the eyes of the owl on the page below become the spots of the ladybird on the page below. In addition to this there’s shapes which you can follow your finger along such as the worm you can feel the wiggly shape of it instead of just seeing it which adds to the interest but offers another way for young children to learn and understand.

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Pages showing what may be found in a woodland

Boo who is now 17 months old loves looking at this book but also with me telling her what the creatures are. She also enjoys it when her older brother Monkey who is now 7 looks through the book with her and does animal sounds or pretends to be a snake or an elephant when she’s looking at those animals.

I really like the feel of this book and even though we’ve had it for a couple of months it still looks new despite it being read several times a day and eaten by Boo as she’s teething!

For a colourful lively book with cute cartoon animals this is a lovely little book. It gives enough information to small children with animal names and the pages of animals are grouped i.e. farm animals, forest animals, insects, sea creatures and jungle which can lead to further reading and understanding as the child grows.

As Boo is unable at this time to tell me how many out of 10 she’d give it I can only go on how much she looks at this book and requests it so I would suggest 8/10 as she has other books she enjoys more. I will give this 8/10 as it can grow with the child demonstrated even by my son being still interested in flicking through the pages with Boo and it has led to discussions with him regarding the many featured animals.

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That’s Not My Piglet – Usborne Touchy Feely Book

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We love the Usborne books in our house and have lots of different books for various stages of child development and interests.

I was first introduced to the touchy feely books when my son was a baby and have in fact kept them all for my daughter who is 10 months old.

This book however was a brand new book bought especially for Boo when she was first born. I had shown her this book quite a few times but it’s only been since she was 6 months old and able to sit by herself that she’s really enjoyed the different pages.

For those not aware the touchy feely books have quite a few in the series all along similar lines telling the reader that’s not my…. until the final page where you find the correct animal for instance.

Each page has different textures for baby to feel such as fuzzy or scratchy. The different patches of texture are designed to develop sensory awareness and language. Every book has a main character but they all have a little mouse to find on each page.

Unlike most stories the touchy feely books actually start the story on the front cover so that baby is instantly drawn to them.

All the pages are brightly coloured however they are not garish like most young children books. My daughter’s favourite page is this bright yellow page with a black and white piglet with scratchy texture.
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Although I’ve said this is a baby book it is suitable for
newborn babies and well into toddler stage. They are extremely well made and tough ideal for those looking for something to chew as you can see from the photo above.

My daughter is unable to tell me how much she likes this book but simply watching her grin at every page even when left to flip through the pages alone I can easily see this is certainly a favourite and I imagine she would give it 8/10 I would give it 9/10 as the colours are so striking and it has kept her entertained for a while now so it certainly has a well deserved place on our bookshelf.

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