A few weeks ago we asked our Facebook followers to tell us their current favourite book and ‘Sunk!’ was far and away the most popular response. We love Rob Biddulph but didn’t have this particular title so we grabbed ourselves a copy straight away and we’re very glad we did!
If you’ve read ‘Blown Away‘ then you’ll already be familiar with little Penguin Blue, a fun-loving penguin who is very adept at getting himself in a sticky situation far from home. Here, he dresses as a pirate and sets off to sail the seven seas in a rubber dinghy with his friends. Their goal is to find treasure but unfortunately they cross paths with a swordfish who pops their boat and sends them sinking in to the murky depths of the sea. Eeek!
However they soon discover that the ocean floor is awash with treasure when they find a sunken ship! Tired of swimming, they head to a nearby desert island to rest and figure out the next steps. It’s all very well finding lots of treasure, but how on earth are they going to get home without a boat?
Hi Gemma! Tell us a little bit about yourself and what you do
I am a Montessori Directress working at ‘Kids Love Nature’ Kindergarten, where we follow Forest school, Montessori and Reggio Emilio ethos. The nursery is located within a country park. I also teach Children’s Yoga every Saturday morning. I teach Yoga to children from 3 years – 9 years old.
How do you incorporate books in to your children’s yoga classes?
I love hunting for good children’s books in charity shops and at the library. I choose books that have animals or a nature theme as I am very much in to the outdoors. With my younger class I tell the story and we do poses which are relevant – for example with Dear Zoo we do elephant, frog and snake poses. The children often have read the book already or I choose what I think is a new book. Today I choose ‘The Old Lady That Swallowed the Sea’. The children had all read ‘The Old Lady That Swallowed A Fly’, but not this one.
Hoot Owl isn’t just any old owl – he is the master of the disguise. Or at least he thinks he is! Every night he goes out in search of a meal and uses his disguise ‘skills’ to try and capture his prey.
He tries to catch a rabbit by dressing up as a carrot. He tries to fool a lamb in to coming near him by dressing as a mummy sheep. He disguises himself as an ornamental bird bath in order to catch a pigeon. He thinks he’s extremely clever but the fact is his disguises are rubbish! None of the animals are fooled and Hoot ends up with a very rumbly tummy indeed.
His opinion of himself is so high that he cannot understand why his tactics aren’t working. It looks as though poor, delusional Hoot may have to go hungry. But then he spots a steaming hot pizza. Can he put together a disguise which will fool this yummy prey?
We love this series of books by Andrea Beaty and David Roberts. Ada Twist is the best of the bunch in our opinion but this one comes a close second!
Shy little Rosie Revere dreams of becoming a great engineer. Like a magpie she collects gizmos and gadgets that other people have thrown away and in her bedroom at night she turns them in to amazing inventions – including a hot dog dispenser and some helium pants!
Her favourite uncle is a zookeeper so she makes him a special hat (made of parts of a fan and some squirty cheese) to keep the snakes off his head. She proudly hands it over but her uncle laughs! He says he likes it but poor Rosie is mortified and vows never to invent anything again.
But then one day she discovers that her very clever aunt (who used to build aeroplanes) dreams of being able to fly and she begins to wonder if she could make this happen. Can she use all of her ingenuity and help her aunt take to the skies?
When I Grow Up… by Patrick George is a very visual, interactive book so it’s quite difficult to do it justice with just words!
The book encourages your child to think about what job they might like to do when they are an adult and the fab transparent pages add an extra layer of fun.
First we see a picture of a girl who wants to be a pilot. On the opposite page is an aeroplane with big shiny windows. The windows are printed on a transparent page and when you flip this over they become a pair of an aviator sunglasses on the young girl, instantly transforming her in to a pilot.
Our copy of The Singing Mermaid by Julia Donaldson and Lydia Monks looks a little the worse for wear as it’s seen a LOT of love in the 18 months we’ve owned it!
The story is about a mermaid with a beautiful voice. One day she is discovered by a circus owner called Sam Sly who convinces her to leave her lovely beach to join his circus and sing to the crowds. He promises that if she goes with him she will become rich and famous. Excited, she agrees to go despite the protestations of her friends.
She makes lots of friends at the circus but surprise surprise, Sam Sly does not turn out to be a nice character. He keeps her in a tiny fish tank and the riches he promised never materialise. Instead she feels trapped and longs to return to the sea.
Down in the valley life is happy and peaceful – bears, foxes and birds roam the beautiful countryside. The different species live harmoniously alongside each other.
Then one day a big dog appears. The dog has a terrible hunger and eats everything in his sight. To try and calm him, a fox steps forward and plays a tune on his fiddle, but the dog just gobbles him up. The fox continues to play his tune from within the dog’s tummy and it’s heard by some brave bunnies who try to rescue him – but they also find themselves in the belly of the beast.
The dog refuses to listen to reason and continues to feed his hunger by consuming everything in his path – but deep in his tummy a community of animals is coming together. They light a fire and sit down to talk of the future. Together, they work together to rebuild their world on the inside.
The little baby crocodile in this story LOVES watermelon. He eats it for breakfast, lunch and dinner and simply can’t get enough of its yummy taste – until one day he swallows a seed.
He starts to panic. What will happen to him now? Will a watermelon grow in his tummy? Will he turn pink? Will vines start to grow out of his ears? But then his tummy starts to grumble and he lets out a massive burp which releases the seed. Relieved, he vows never to eat watermelon again. But is is just too delicious to resist?
We love this simple story which addresses a common fear amongst small children. The illustrations (in a watermelon-esque palette of greens and pinks) are fantastic and really emphasise the crocodile’s many wonderful facial expressions as he goes through the cycle of panic and then relief.
Ivy’s favourite part is of course the giant burp, which she loves to join in with and exaggerate!
Buy it now: https://amzn.to/2wCgeX6
Timothy Pope has a new telescope and he’s taken it to the park to play. The park is nice and tranquil – there are birds in the trees, ducks on the pond and children playing happily. Yet, each time Timothy takes a peek down his telescope he shrieks in surprise as he can see a shark!
The clever paper cut outs let you see the ‘shark fin’ each time and then when you turn the page you can see what it really is. A cat’s ear, a birds wing and even a hair quiff can all look like a shark down the lens of Timothy’s telescope. It’s definitely Timothy’s eyes playing tricks on him because there can’t really be a shark in the park. Can there?
The repetitive nature of this book – and the little visual surprises – make it perfect for reading aloud to toddlers. We’ve now read it so many times that Ivy can anticipate what’s coming next and can recite part of the rhyme!