Tuesday, 3 June 2014

enjoying board books: 5 of the best

I've been having a clear out, getting rid of stuff we no longer need now the little girl is nearly four.

One of the things that has gone is lots of board books.  You know, all the 'That's not my...' books, the cute animal books with fluffy bits and so on.  We're left with only five, and they've survived the cull because they're pure dead brilliant.

I thought I'd tell you about them in case you were looking for a present for a baby or toddler that will be appreciated by the whole family.

The books are in no particular order, and most of them can be bought in several formats.  You may well have come across them already, but if not do check them out.

The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle

A fantastically simple and colourful book which is so old that I remember it from my own childhood.  The Very Hungry Caterpillar has different sizes of pages, which help children to understand about numbers, and it also teaches days of the week and healthy eating.  All this with fabulous illustrations which have now spawned lots of merchandise.

Dear Zoo by Rod Campbell

A nice lift-the-flap book, with a simple repetitive theme, encouraging participation in the story.  This is one of those books you will hear very little children reading to themselves.  And it's always fun trying to guess why the animal sent was no good.

Personally I'm not convinced by the ending.  I'd have kept the frog.

Argh Spider! by Lydia Monks

I think Lydia Monks might be my favourite illustrator.  She's done a few books with Julia Donaldson you might have come across as well (eg Sharing a Shell).  This book has the fabulous refrain 'Argh! Spider! Out you go!', and is a heart warming tale of a family changing their mind about a spider when they realise how cool she is (until she pushes her luck too far).

It's well written, has fabulous, colourful illustrations, and its also got glitter!

 How Big is a Pig?  by Clare Beaton

I'm not sure if we ever truly discover how big a pig is, but once again, this book has amazing illustrations (I would love to see the original work, the detail is extraordinary).  It's a lovely rhyming book which takes us through a farm full of animals exploring opposites.

This book deserves to be much better known than it is.

Each Peach Pear Plum by Janet and Allan Ahlberg

I love this book, there are lots of things to spot, and it uses traditional tales, so you know all the characters, but they're outside the realms of their own stories, which I find completely delightful.

I think my favourite bit is where they all come together for a picnic at the end.  There is so much going on in that picture that it sparks more ideas.  We love spotting things in this story.

What are your favourite board books?

Other posts you might like:
The book challenge
Words at 3/6/14 - 82,500.  
43,000 words done since the challenge began, 11,500 last month.
Where I'm at in First Draft - Chapter 20.
What I did last - the heroine having breakfast with her Mum.