Sometimes our bookcase starts to feel a little stale, and I crave new topics to discuss at bedtime. I know people that rotate their children’s books, and maybe this isn’t a bad idea? Often our boys want the same books over and over again, and although it can get repetitive – I do wonder why they love a certain book for a time, and then suddenly move on. What is drawing them to it, and which part are they relating to?
A few weeks ago I mentioned that I took my two littlest on a train ride into Leeds to visit Waterstones. I wanted Ru to choose some new children’s books to add to our bookcase, and here is what he chose:
For Winston he chose I Can Only Draw Worms. I can’t decide if this is the weirdest, most pointless book ever, or something quite genius. It’s just very odd. The book is full of worms (as expected) – worms with glasses, twin worms and poorly worms, that all look very similar. The illustration is bright and childish. It’s mad and perfect for encouraging simple counting.
For himself he chose The Unexpected Visitor. More and more I keep finding books that address current affairs, and this one is all about over fishing. A fisherman goes fishing and catches far too many, so there isn’t enough for his friends. He becomes friends with a whale who teaches him that he only must take what he needs, and no more. The illustration is gorgeous, and it is very easy to understand. It encourages children to be mindful of their environment, including what they eat.
For O, he chose Ten Little Fingers and Ten Little Toes. Otto has really taken to this book. It is illustrated by the familiar Helen Oxenbury and the message is a beautiful one – that whether you were born in a tent, an igloo, the city or the desert, and wherever you live – we are all equal, we are similar, yet so different. The illustrations portray a multitude of ethnicities, and the rhyme makes it an easy read.
For me he chose Oi Frog! which we all really love. Did you know that pumas sit on satsumas, lions sit on irons, parrots sit on carrots and frogs sit on logs? This is such a fun book, and the illustration is bold and hilarious. All of our boys loves it. I’ve been told that Oi Dog! is just as brilliant, so will have to get my hands on that one too.
…and for Jared he chose, The Bear and the Piano. A bear finds a piano in the forest, he practices and practices, he becomes good, travels to the city and becomes a much loved, award winning musician. He is a star, yet he longs for home. He returns to the forest to find his friends waiting for him, supporting him and willing him to succeed. Again this subtly addresses a very current issue – one of fame and fortune, and I love that he has to practice incredibly hard to develop his talent. I think this illustration is my favourite. There is something so enchanting and whimsical about it.
What are you reading in your home?