Boogie’s Book Review Episode 3: Baby’s First Animals and Usborne’s Under The Sea Chunky Book
This week on Boogie’s book review we’re going to look at two books that are perfect for babies, toddlers, and even early readers. These two books help build vocabulary, sight word recognition, and animal recognition while being a quick easy read for the parent.
Do you have a favorite animal book? Let me know in the comments below!
Boogie’s Book Review Episode 3:
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I bought Baby’s First Animal Book from a vendor at a baby and children’s expo while I was pregnant here in Hong Kong. I was immediately drawn to the book because it had big bright colors which I thought Boogie would enjoy one day. The illustrations are also simple, but adorable.
The construction is also very well done, with a solid cover that is also squishy! Not sure why that brings me so much joy but it does! lol. The pages can’t quite be considered the same as a board book, but they are thicker than cardstock. So it’s an in-between thickness. So it’s not going to be as heavy as a board book of this size, but it’s not going to easily bend or rip either. And with a toddler carrying it around this is important.
How we use it:
I love that this book is interactive and grows with your child in a way. As an infant or young toddler you’re going to just start pointing out the colors and the animals. But as they grow older they will be able to name the animals and point out the details. Both the ones suggested in the book and ones you make up. And as they become early readers they will be able to identify the word on the page with the animal. I even like to compare the two animals on each spread. For example:
- “The duck swims in water and the elephant walks on land.”
- “The duck has a hard bill for a nose while the elephant has a long trunk.”
So while it seems like a simple book and that you shouldn’t waste your money on something so basic, it really does have a lot you can do with it because it is simple. You can make it into what you need it to be. It even can become the basis of a spelling unit later or a unit on animals for a preschooler.
How would you use the book if you owned it?
This particular book I got from a friend having an Usborne online party while I was pregnant. We love the water in our house and so anytime we can get something to do with the ocean we do lol. I had to wait months to be able to get it when we went home one summer, but it was worth the wait.
For a children’s book, it is so well illustrated. Where the Baby’s First Animal Book had bright saturated colors, this book has calming colors and beautiful illustrations. And even the shark looks friendly! I also love how it doesn’t just have uniform, non-descript ocean scenes with random sea animals, but instead it shows animals from various sea levels, even tide pools!
The size of this book is perfect for little hands and for being on the go. It’s light enough and small enough to easily fit into my backpack or his diaper bag so that I can use it to distract him or calm him when we’re out and about. But sturdy enough that I don’t have to worry about him ripping the pages… however he can chew the corners, so be aware of that.
You can extend learning by:
- Counting the animals: don’t just stop at naming the animals, count them too! You could even introduce basic math with addition and subtraction. “If there are 3 gray dolphins and 2 blue dolphins then how many dolphins in total?”
- Naming the colors: there are so many beautiful colors! name them all!
- Visiting an aquarium and pointing out the animals from the book: the book is so small it would be easy to use the book as the basis of a scavenger hunt!
- Making crafts and snacks around the ocean theme: use tangram shapes to make fish, cut paper strips (a great fine motor skills activity) and a half circle to make jelly fish, make a sensory box to mimic tide pools. So many great activities can accompany this simple book.
I love both of these books for their simplicity and for the fact the pages don’t rip lol! Both would be great additions to a young reader’s collection.
Now that you’ve seen both, which one do you think your child would be most interested in now? Let me know in the comments below!