Gregory Goose is on the Loose! (series)
Catch A Star, 2020
20pp., board book, RRP $A12.99
These are the latest additions to this series which focuses on the young reader focusing on each double-page spread to find Gregory Goose. As well as developing their visual acuity as they hone their skills searching for him, by having each story in a specific setting that may already be familiar to the child or is likely to become more familiar as their reading journey progresses. site-specific vocabulary is developed so they learn about the sorts of things they would expect to see in each venue. This is a critical aspect of early reading development because it helps them broaden their horizons but also focuses their attention on the setting, bringing to mind likely possibilities of what unknown words could be.
For example, while not many Australian youngsters will have had personal experience of what mountain life is like, by using the first-letter cue of “s’ (“get your mouth ready for…”) and using the pictures and the knowledge they have gained from books like these, they are more likely to transfer what they know to a new situation and be able to use the context to identify words like snow, snowmen, snowballs, skis, sled, and slope.
With their bright, clear illustrations that have lots going on, this is a series that will draw children back to it many times as they discover something new each time, and each time developing their feeling of mastery over this format and skill known as reading.
What seems like a simple hide-and-seek book actually has a vital place in those early reading behaviours and building concepts about print.