32pp., pbk., RRP $A16.99
There is so much in this world to introduce a little one to that it can be overwhelming but this cleverly written and designed picture book is the perfect start.
On each page Baby is encouraged to focus on something through a cutout – a dolphin, cloud, grasshopper, frog – but when the page is turned, instead of the anticipated word there is a whole environment with like-minded inhabitants! The dolphin reveals a seascape with seagulls and shells and turtles and sandcastles; the owls reveal a tree with “shiver-quiver leaves that shade you and me”. The final pages are just delightful – give a baby a mirror and sit back and observe – bringing a sense of the happy ending that stories for this age should have. Then, as an added extra, the final page revisits all the details in the big pictures to encourage the child to re-focus and ensure they found them all. So perfect for a re-read and then a trip outside to see what can be spotted in the real world and what extra things might be added. What else can you see in the sky? Is it always blue like the picture? Consider having preschoolers paint a picture of a particular habitat, perhaps with labels, to share with their younger siblings so they can show off what they know and add to Baby’s repertoire.
With its interactivity, its rhyme and rhythm, its gentle illustrations, and clever design that fosters focus on both detail and broader picture, this book has all the best elements that encourage our little ones to find joy and excitement in stories and books. It builds up those essential concepts about print and early reading behaviours that are the hallmarks of early reading success.
Any new parent will love to have this as a gift – it promises hours of entertainment.