Monday, 20 August 2012

Botas Nuevas, Guido van Genechten

EDITORIAL JUVENTUD S.A. 2002
Original edition: Nieuwe Laarzen, Clavis Vitgeverij, 1997

This post may not be much use to anyone, which is a shame as it’s my “comeback” after quite an absence! We’ve got it in Spanish, and I can’t find an English translation anywhere! L If anyone knows of one, please let me know. I tell it in English, and the Spanish isn’t difficult if you have just the very basics.

Botas Nuevas is my 2 –year-old’s latest obsession. I think we read it four times a day at the moment, so it seems a good book to come back with! It’s great for little ones, and good fun to work with with early leaners of English. The story’s simple and the illustrations are beautiful: bright and bold and conveying the most wonderful sense of life and energy and fun.

The title and the first page say it all: Jan’s got NEW BOOTS, big, bright red wellies, and in these new boots he can do all that a child could possibly need to: run, jump, dance, climb, kick a ball around and splash in puddles! My little one loves jumping up and showing me how he dances and runs and jumps, just the same as Jan. Various animals (real and stuffed) look on or take part in the action, making for a great book to point things out in and talk about.



I like this page best of all: doesn't it just make you want to jump up and run around with them???!

Saturday, 26 May 2012

Press Here, Hervé Tullet

I absolutely fell in love with this book this week when my 4 year-old's best friend lent it to us to have a look at as a possible birthday present for another friend. We read it straight away, and both my boys were enthralled, as was Eva, the book's owner, who'd heard it a thousand times before. Originally written in French (we've borrowed it in Catalan) it works perfectly well in English, and I'm sure in any language you'd care to translate it into. It's really really simple, a brilliant idea that looks lovely on the page and is great fun to read. Especially with an enthusiastic, expectant tone of voice for the instructions, and one of excited surprise for the results.

Instructions??? Results??? What happens when you press here? Have a look:

Sunday, 20 May 2012

Room on the Broom, Julia Donaldson & Axel Scheffler


Perhaps I shouldn't review anything by the award- winning Donaldson- Scheffler team if I don't start with The Gruffalo, the most well-known of their books. But just because everyone has heard of The Gruffalo, I wanted to start with another one, and I think this one is brilliant, definitely up there with The Gruffalo itself! It's also one that a friend of mine doesn't have. I promised him this review, and I hope it convinces him to get it for his little girl.

Room on the Broom is a fantastic treatise on the value of sharing and of having friends! A series of animals help a butterfingered witch get her belongings back as, one by one, they fall off her broomstick, and in return she and her cat allow them to clamber on and share a windswept ride with them, until the broomstick becomes quite crowded and disaster strikes! Luckily, the witch’s newfound friends are there to help her out of the sticky situation she finds herself in.

Sunday, 6 May 2012

Dinosaur Roar, Paul & Henrietta Stickland



I love dinosaurs! This lovely book is a picture catalogue of dinosaurs big and small who are all different but share one thing in common: they're all hungry! The beautiful ink illustrations feature fangs and claws galore in a fantastic parade of real and invented dinosaurs, and the rhyming text links them in pairs of opposites: fast/slow, above/below etc. 

Why not use it with emerging readers, too? The repetition produced by the rhyme gives practice with several different letter combinations.

There's loads to talk about in this book: colours, parts of the body, or the adjectives suggested by the text itself. Great for natives and non-natives.


Español: ¡Me encantan los dinosaurios! Este divertido libro es un catálogo de dinosaurios grandes y pequeños, todos diferentes pero con una cosa en común: ¡todos tienen hambre! Las preciosas ilustraciones en tinta muestran una serie de dinosaurios variopinta, repleta de garras y dientes afilados, y el texto los junta en parejas de opuestos: lento/rápido, encima/debajo, etc.

¿Porqué no usarlo en las primeras fases de la lectura en inglés también? La repetición que proporcionan las rimas facilita la práctica de varias combinaciones de letras.

Este libro da mucho de que hablar con los peques: los colores, las partes del cuerpo, o los mismos adjetivos reflejados en el texto. Muy divertido para nativos y no nativos.

Friday, 4 May 2012

Monkey and Me, Emily Gravett

This great little rhyming book tells the story of a little girl and her monkey and their trip to the zoo. The wonderful illustrations and rhythm have kept both of my little ones crying out for this one again and again. The vocabulary is simple and the illustrations clearly outline the story, which makes it a fantastic read for both native and non-native speakers.

I could also see this book being used with slightly older children to stimulate first reading skills: the repetition gives them security, the illustrations facilitate, and the length of the book gives them a goal that is easily reached.

One of our favourites!



Español: Este divertido libro cuenta la rítmica historia de una niña y su mono de peluche y su visita al zoo. El vocabulario es muy sencillo, y las preciosas ilustraciones contribuyen de forma esencial al desarrollo de la historia, lo cual lo hace una opción perfecta tanto para nativos como para no nativos. Mis pequeñajos me lo piden una y otra vez.

También recomendaría este libro para niños un pelín más mayores para estimular las primeras fases de la lectura: la repetición les da seguridad, las ilustraciones les facilita la tarea, y la reducida duración les presenta una meta fácil de alcanzar. 

¡Uno de nuestros preferidos!