“What were the first books that your daughter enjoyed?” asked a friend of mine last week. Without doubt my daughter loved The Wheels on the Bus and Old Macdonald had a Farm, classic rhymes told in board books with holes. They are sturdy, small enough for little hands and the lovely bright, colourful illustrations provide lots of stimulus for discussion. Published in a variety of formats they are the perfect introduction to traditional children’s rhymes.
The Wheels on the Bus – Illustrator: Annie Kubler
There was a time when we had The Wheels on the Bus on repeat play and it was the only song that we sung on long car journeys. The sturdy little board book is the perfect accompaniment to the song and there are holes cut out on each page showing various parts of the bus and the passengers. Each double page spread is dedicated to a new verse and a colourful character joins the bus until it reaches its destination. There are clues in the pictures as to where the characters on the bus are going – a face painter, a lady with a large cake and a magician. The final spread shows a party although it isn’t clear whose party it is, my daughter says it can’t be the bus driver’s birthday as there aren’t enough candles on the cake!
Old Macdonald had a Farm – Illustrator: Pam Adams
The Old Macdonald in this little board book is dressed in full Scottish regalia, does the Highland fling and tosses the caber so it is great for stimulating discussion about Scottish traditions. The verse is shown on the left of the double page spread and the farm is shown on the right. The animals are partially hidden on each picture until they are revealed through the holes with the corresponding verse. Mrs Macdonald is portrayed serenely feeding the chickens until the final page when all the animals are loose and by the end Old Macdonald is sitting on his tractor with his fingers in his ears! It is a lovely book for introducing very young children to animals and animal sounds.
Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly – Illustrator: Pam Adams
I had the Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly when I was a child. The Old Lady is celebrating her 40th birthday and UK residents have until the end of October to enter a competition and win a copy on Readitdaddy’s blog.
There are a range of books with holes on the Child’s Play website, they come in several formats and some have accompanying CDs. The board books are great first books for toddlers and I have often read the big books in a nursery or reception classroom. We’d love to hear what your favourites are from this series.
Age Range: 0 to 5
Publisher: Child’s Play