A few weeks ago, Ivy and I were having a chilled morning in our pyjamas with no specific plans for the day – but then this book arrived in the post and everything changed. Suddenly our living room was an exercise studio and Ivy was in stitches trying to hold a Tree pose whilst I read to her about a yoga-loving llama!
Llamaste is a kind and calm creature who loves to practise yoga and look after her friends. The story follows her as she pays each of them a visit and helps them feel better using different yoga poses. A scared flamingo tries the Warrior pose and soon feels like a superhero. A cross tiger calms down using the Downward Dog. Each friend has a different worry for Llamaste to ease and each page encourages your child to consider their own emotions by asking them if they have ever felt this way.
We’ve recently discovered the joys of Claude and his trusty side kick Sir Bobblysock via the TV Series on Disney Junior so we were very excited to receive this book in the post. Based on one of the episodes, this sporty story follows the two friends as they hunt down their favourite fruit!
When Sir Bobblysock wakes up early one morning with a craving for strawberries, he and Claude head out to their local fruit and veg van to buy some. However when they get there they discover that the entire strawberry supply has been bought up by the Pawhaven Tennis Championship. Oh no!
If you have a child who rejects story time because they don’t like to sit still then Bumpus Jumpus Dinosaurumpus might be the book that you’re looking for. The infectious rhyme encourages your child to dance around and I defy anyone to read this aloud without wiggling a little themselves!
The story introduces you to a whole host of dinosaurs as they take part in a Dinosaurumpus – a noisy, bouncy and frankly bonkers celebration of who they are. They twizzle, spin, bomp and stomp together until they hear a giant roar. What on earth is making that scary noise and will it want to eat them up or just join in the fun?
We’ve read this one so many times that Ivy joins in with the ‘chorus’ and bangs the sofa like a drum in time with they way I read the rhyme. We started off just reciting it but these days it’s more like (extremely amateur!) performance art as I rap the lyrics (badly) and she bounces up and down and squeals with delight. It’s definitely not a bedtime book in our house!
Ivy will be going on her very first beach holiday this year so we’ve started to read some books about it to get her excited and so that she understands a little about what to expect.
This one, by Rae Rankin, follows a little girl called Penny as she enjoys a much anticipated day at the seaside. We watch as she does cartwheels on the shore, builds sand castles with her dog, collects shells, plays with a Frisbee, explores rock pools, and even flies her kite. I particularly like the fact it shows your child all the wonders of the beach but also takes the time to point out that you HAVE to put your sun cream on before you can run and enjoy it!
I was fortunate enough to grow up near the beach and this book conveys the excitement of a beach day perfectly. The bouncy rhyme carries you along and the adorable wide-eyed illustrations highlight the wonder and innocence of each fascinating new discovery.
Buy it now: https://amzn.to/2rolB9b
Little Flora has found a nest of eggs and they’re starting to hatch. When the mother hen wanders off Flora tries to scoop up the little chicks and transfer them to a large bowl but their wriggling and flapping make it a challenging task. Can your little one help her count them in?
This wordless lift-the-flap book has gorgeous illustrations and the cheeky rabble of wandering chicks never fail to amuse Ivy as they refuse to stay put. Flora is a determined little girl though and, unflustered, she tries her best to round all ten of them up.
How does she manage to do this so gracefully? Look closely at the illustrations and you’ll spot that she’s actually performing a number of dance moves as she gathers up the chicks – a lovely detail if your toddler happens to go to a dance class and can recognise the positions!
This fantastic book will be a useful tool for any parent whose child loves screen time a little bit too much.
Blip is a little robot who loves to play on her computer all day long. She uses it to learn new things, to see faraway lands, to listen to music and to challenge herself with puzzles and games. But then one day there’s a power cut and she trips over her wire, tumbles out of her house and down a hill and ends up drifting down a river in to a forest.
This is unknown territory for Blip – she is outside and unplugged! What will happen to her and what will she learn in the great outdoors?
The imagery in this book is beautiful and I love the way the pictures move from monochrome and ‘blocky’ when Blip is on her computer to bright colours and soft lines when she is outside. Blip herself is adorable and Ivy thinks she’s super cute!
The star of this story is a little girl called Florence who shows promise at all things sporty from a very young age. Spotting her potential, her father nurtures her abilities and together they have lots of fun practising running and throwing.
However when Florence starts school she is immediately faced with prejudice. A little boy called Frank tells her that girls are rubbish at sport and that boys are better and stronger. He tells everyone that it must be true because this is what his dad says.
Enraged, Florence challenges Frank to a race after school. Can Florence prove that boys and girls are equal or will Frank’s outdated opinions win the day?
This is an empowering book about gender equality with something for both girls and boys to enjoy. The intelligent rhyme is coupled with gorgeous illustrations (by Jacquie Hughes)and the message is one that I wish we saw more of in children’s literature today. Girls are strong enough and smart enough to look after themselves!
This book is fantastic for alleviating boredom when you’re stuck indoors with a toddler and it’s lots of fun for parent and child alike.
The two main characters – a little girl and a fluffy green monster wearing a rather fetching hat – invite their animal friends (and you) to copy them in a game called ‘Just Like Me’.
Clear some space on the floor and get your toddler to repeat all of the actions which the characters make. From rubbing your tummy and licking your lips to jumping up and down picking your nose, each page invites you and your child to do something silly that will make you laugh.
I find that the more exaggerated I make the actions then the more Ivy laughs and she loves getting involved. It also references lots of parts of the body so it’s a great way of learning some new words whilst having fun.
Buy it now: https://amzn.to/2uI3yzB
This lovely book was a Christmas present from an old friend and made its way to us here in the UK all the way from Australia!
Rusty is a small kangaroo who loves to race and his ultimate goal is to take part in the biggest competition of all – The Race That Stops The Outback. However when he tells the other kangaroos his plan they all laugh and tell him he”s not tough enough to do it because he’s too small.
Determined to prove them wrong, he turns to his friends for help and they suggest that he try something a little different. All of the kangaroos will be hopping but if he could learn to run then maybe he could move twice as fast! It’ll be tough but Rusty is up for the challenge.
Biff isn’t like other dogs. He doesn’t like playing fetch and he doesn’t do dog stuff like scratch himself or drink from the loo. Instead he dreams of becoming a ballerina!
He follows his owner to her ballet classes and watches intently – but whenever he tries to dance everyone says ‘dogs don’t do ballet!’.
For her birthday, his owner receives tickets to the royal ballet but Biff isn’t allowed to go. He’s so desperate to see the show that he sneaks after her.
Disaster strikes when the prima ballerina trips and falls – who could possibly take her place and save the show?
This is a great book which shows you should always follow your dreams and be true to yourself, even when others doubt you.
Buy it now: http://amzn.to/2EFDG8L