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How to Find a Rainbow

How to Find a Rainbow

How to Find a Rainbow

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How to Find a Rainbow

Alom Shaha

Sarthak Sinha

Scribble, 2024

32pp., hbk., RRP $A24.99

9781761380372

Reena and Rekha may be sisters, but when it comes to the weather, they couldn’t be more different.  Reena hates rainy days because she sees them as grey and gloomy, depriving her of being outside painting all the bright and beautiful things.  Whereas Rekha loves the smell of wet earth and the solitude of being outside when everyone else is in.

As she splashes in the puddles she sees a rainbow, and knows immediately that it is something Reena will want to see.  But by the time Reena joins her, the rainbow has disappeared.  Where can it be?  Will they find it again?

There is a saying, “Without rain, there can be no rainbows”, and this charming story can be read on two levels – that of two sisters in search of a physical rainbow and that of emerging from a gloomy emotional episode and beginning to find joy again.  It offers scope for investigating the science of rainbows (as well as instructions for creating one) , but also helps young readers understand that even if siblings or friends don’t like the same things, there are still ways to come together.  With much of the story carried in the dialogue which is assigned directly to each character, and an original style of artwork, this is a story of two red pandas that offers much to young readers learning to explore the world around them so that they will be looking forward to the next rainy day to explore for themselves. You could even teach them the word “petrichor” which is the grown-up word for the smell of dry earth as rain hits it, and watch them impress others with their knowledge! 

Follow the Rainbow

Follow the Rainbow

Follow the Rainbow

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Follow the Rainbow

Juliet M. Sampson

Anne Ryan

Ford Street, 2023

32pp., pbk., RRP $A17.95

9781922696335

Ruby and her little dog Tavish are idling away a beautiful sunny day, fascinated by the patterns and pictures she finds in the clouds drifting overhead.  There’s a fairy with a wand, a witch with a broom and a wizard with a cape…

“I wonder what else might live in the sky,” Ruby muses as raindrops begin to fall and her dreaming is interrupted. As she heads for home, a rainbow appears and that sparks her curiosity too.  “I wonder what’s at the end of the rainbow.”  But when she asks the Scarecrow in the field, he has nothing to say and neither does Metal Man in the shed.  Even Lion left in the barn after milking doesn’t answer and so Ruby and Tavish decide to find out for themselves…

This is a story just ripe for sharing and exploring in so many directions – just as Ruby finds wonder in the clouds and the rainbow, so too do so many children and so there is a great opportunity to develop a rainbow of questions about clouds, rainbows, weather and colours to explore.  Each question might even be written on colourful paper and put together in a rainbow-shaped collage, just as those in the illustrations have been done, leading to all sorts of observations about colour and shape as each child finds just the right piece to add.

Then there are  the obvious links to The Wonderful Wizard of Oz , both book and movie, that can open up new reading horizons while  the iconic song, Somewhere Over the Rainbow by Judy Garland or Emerald City by The Seekers suggest artworks full of imagination and colour.

 And if those ideas don’t appeal, perhaps just take your little one outside and do some cloud watching together. 

 

 

 

 

How It Works: Light

How It Works: Light

How It Works: Light

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How It Works: Light

Sarah Hull

Kelly McKean

Usborne, 2023

16pp., board book., RRP $A19.99

9781474998895

Most of us know that light is the key to life on this planet and that our major light source is the sun.  But there are many other facts about this phenomenon that remain a mystery to us, even as adults, and in this new book from Usborne some of the ways that light works that baffle us are explained in a lift-the-flap format with simple text and bright, appealing diagrams.

Budding young scientists (and even those who aren’t) can learn how light works, why there is even light at night,  how colours are formed and perceived, and a host of other fascinating facts including some simple experiments that can be tried to understand the concepts better.  More for the age group that has a basic awareness of science than our youngest readers, this is a book that answers those fundamental questions ranging from rainbows and reflections to lightyears and lasers and then these are backed up by the usual Quicklinks for those who want to know more about  particular aspects.  

The format could even serve as a model for a class investigation as students pose their own questions and then explore and explain the concept to develop their own answers. 

The Very Hungry Caterpillar Eats Lunch

The Very Hungry Caterpillar Eats Lunch

The Very Hungry Caterpillar Eats Lunch

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Very Hungry Caterpillar Eats Lunch

Eric Carle

Puffin, 2023

12pp., board book., RRP $A16.99

9780241618523

 

Remember that very hungry caterpillar that hatched from the egg lying on a leaf when the sun came up one Sunday morning? And then through the week he ate his way through an assortment of healthy fruit until on Saturday he pigged out on an array of goodies?  And then, that night had a stomach ache? 

Well, he’s back!  This time in a series of books that focus on the various meals of the day, in this case lunch.  Each day he has something different, with an emphasis on its colour but while there is the odd treat like a chocolate cookie, he shuns the sticky blue lollipops completely. And of course he finishes with a feast, but this time is is a multicoloured fruit salad!  

The emphasis on healthy choices permeates all four books, but each has a different focus – The Very Hungry Caterpillar Eats Breakfast has a counting theme; The Very Hungry Caterpillar Eats Dinner is about shapes; The Very Hungry Caterpillar Eats Snacks introduces opposites while The Very Hungry Caterpillar’s Australian Feast is all about what special things a little one might take to a picnic on an Australian beach.  

The VHC has been a constant for generations of children for over 50 years and now another generation can delight in his continuing adventures and learn so much at the same time. 

Find Spot: An Australian Adventure

Find Spot: An Australian Adventure

Find Spot: An Australian Adventure

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Find Spot: An Australian Adventure

Eric Hill

Puffin, 2023

18pp., board book., RRP $A14.99

9780241618127

Spot and his mum and dad are camping near a billabong and exploring the Australian outback, its colours and creatures. As they paddle down the creek they discover all the colours that can be found in and around the billabong and meet lots of Australian animals along the way, most of them hidden under flaps for littlies to lift, but as they are exploring, Spot disappears! Where did he go?

Eric Hill’s Where’s Spot? was the first ever lift-the-flap book – and his ground-breaking innovation continues to delight and surprise readers with interactive fun. Spot has now been a trusted character in early learning for over 40 years, selling over 65 million books worldwide. And the tradition continues as young readers not only have the delight of discovering what is under the flap, but also sharing a familiar adventure with a favourite character, building their vocabulary with words like “billabong”, naming the colours that they can see and having fun identifying those creatures they already recognise – all critical skills in early reading development and affirming that they, too, will become a “real reader”. 

 

 

Tap! Tap! Tap!

Tap! Tap! Tap!

Tap! Tap! Tap!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tap! Tap! Tap!

Hervé Tullet

A & U Children, 2023

64pp., hbk., RRP $A27.99

9781761180231

When you see Hervé Tullet’s name on a book cover, you know the littlest readers in your life are about to have an interactive, imaginary treat!  The author of Press HereMix it UpLet’s Play,  and Play This Book   is back with another invitation for little hands to follow the instructions and delight in the movements they can make as it weaves in and out and around and over coloured dots, circles and lines..

“Ready? Place your hand here. Close your eyes. Concentrate. Hit it! Three times: Tap! Tap! Tap!”

As with the others, Tullet speaks directly to the reader encouraging them to  follow instructions and talk about what happens when they do  They are in charge of their fingers so they are empowered to follow (or not) consolidating that vital message that reading is fun and can be done by anyone, while developing those essential fine motor skills and instilling the left-to-right nature of reading as a natural direction.  

Full of whimsy and fun, this is one that should be in any preschooler’s realm.  They will be reading it for themselves in no time at all, strengthening their belief that they, too, can be readers. 

Can You Get Rainbows in Space?

Can You Get Rainbows in Space?

Can You Get Rainbows in Space?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Can You Get Rainbows in Space?

Dr Sheila Kumani

Liz Kay

Puffin, 2023

128pp., hbk., RRP $A32.99

9780241519721

Can you get rainbows in space? If you have seen the images coming from Tasmania of the Aurora Australis in the last week , then the answer would seem to be yes.

But what causes these spectacular light shows?  Indeed, what causes all the colours that we see in our world?

This book is a comprehensive introduction to and investigation of the phenomenon of colour and how each of the visible colours of the rainbow is created by light (the most important thing) and waves (not the kind you see at the beach – though you will learn why the sea looks blue!).  Readers find out how some animals are able to glow in the dark and how others change their colours to hide from predators, why leaves change colour in the autumn, why our veins look blue but our blood is red, and how the language we use shapes the colours we see . . .

Using lots of illustrations, the information is presented in easily accessible language so young readers can understand this thing that has such an impact on our lives, not just physically but also emotionally.  Taking each colour in turn, each chapter explores fascinating facts about that colour and then we go beyond the rainbow to explore black and white, infrared and ultraviolet, fluorescence, seeing in the dark and whether there really are rainbows in space.

A fascinating, easy-to-read investigation that will answer so many questions our young scientists have. 

Hello, Emma Memma

Hello, Emma Memma

Hello, Emma Memma

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hello, Emma Memma

Emma Memma

Kerrie Hess

Puffin, 2023

32pp., hbk., RRP $A19.99

9781761341045

On a gum tree, amidst a cloud of orange and pink blossoms and butterflies hangs an orange and pink cocoon which gradually grows and changes to reveal its secret – the emergence of Emma Memma, a new character in children’s books for our youngest readers in what is the first of “an expansive publishing program encompassing story, novelty and activity formats.”.

Welcome to a place
With a gum blossom tree
And pink painted leaves
What else can you see?

A friend, a buddy
A pal to play games
She is ready to join in
Emma Memma is her name.

But to many, she is not so new because before the curly red hair, pink shirt and orange dress, Emma Memma was dressed in a familiar yellow skivvy performing with The Wiggles from 2013 to 2018. And behind the entertainer’s face is Emma Watkins, a woman passionate about raising awareness  of Australia’s deaf community, who already has formal qualifications in Auslan and who is currently undertaking her PhD in “the affective, artistic integration of sign language, dance and film editing.”  So, through a range of projects, young readers can expect to be entertained through “movement, creativity, inclusiveness and friendship” that embrace those with special needs because as well as the storybooks, there will be simultaneous releases of an ebook, audiobook and an Auslan video translation, accessed through her website where there is already much to entertain.

This not the first picture book released by a media personality whose name is already familiar but it would among but a handful that reaches out beyond the pages of print so that a much broader audience can enjoy what their peers are reading. 

 

The Last Crayon

The Last Crayon

The Last Crayon

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Last Crayon

Fifi Colston

Little Steps, 2022

24pp., pbk., RRP $A16.95

9781922678522

When the squirrels find a box of crayons, each takes one and knows exactly what they are going to draw based on its colour.  Except for grey squirrel who gets the grey crayon.  If yellow is for the sunrise, blue is the sky and green is the grass, what is grey for?

This is another story evolving from The Book Hungry Bears television show in which the main characters share picture books, hungry to learn all they can from those they settle down to share together. With so much screen-based interaction for our littlies, taking the time to share a story and discuss it with them is critical if they are to learn about the constancy of print and the potential that the stories offer, and particularly that they can return to them time and time again and even build their own stories. What else could they draw with the red crayon? What might happen if the squirrels mixed the colours together?  Can they use pictures from magazines to make a collage of purple things?  Is one colour more common than the others? What might the world look like if it was monochromatic? And so on…

Wizelda

Wizelda

Wizelda

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wizelda

Maggie May Gordon

Natasha Hagarty

Little Steps, 2022

32pp., pbk., RRP $A16.95

9781922358608

Everyone knows what a witch looks like – always dressed in black with a funny old black hat.  And what they do – stirring strange brews in big pots with large spoons. And what they have – broomsticks that they fly around on at night, with cats perched on the back and accompanied by owls and bats. 

But what if that’s not what you want?  If you’re left out of the other children’s games because of your black dress but you can’t afford to buy the coloured fabric they are all wearing? And your black pointy hat crushes your curls? Then one day you spot a beautiful  rainbow, full of colour and your mother tells you about the pot of gold at the end of it? Of course you climb it – but is this a case of be careful what you wish for or is there a more magical ending?

An interesting book to share at this time of the year with Halloween and all things witches in the spotlight, or any time you want to introduce children to the concepts of colours and rainbows and they are as curious as Wizelda.