Age Range: 4 to 8
Despite the fact that more people are sending virtual Christmas cards and messages I still like to send real Christmas cards. The Jolly Christmas Postman also has lots to deliver on his snowy Christmas Eve round, the characters in the story are preparing for Christmas and some are already celebrating with sherry and mince pies.
The Story: The Jolly Christmas Postman delivers games, Christmas cards, puzzles, catalogues and books to a variety of fairytale and nursery rhyme characters. His final stop is to deliver the children’s letters to Santa who has a very special letter for the postman and also helps him to get home through the snow.
The story has a rhyming text and there are six envelopes for readers to open. My daughter likes playing Red Riding Hood’s game and doing the jigsaw puzzle for Humpty Dumpty (who receives his post in hospital where he keeps falling out of bed!). Mr Wolf has entered into the Christmas spirit by hosting a party for the three little pigs and the little red hen and I love the amusing wolf spotter’s guide that the postman brings him. The Jolly Postman also receives a lovely present from Santa which reinforces the message that Christmas is the season for giving.
Janet Ahlberg’s wonderfully detailed illustrations are very festive and include presents, mince pies, trees and snow. The seasonal stamps on the envelopes are also lovely to look at. The final double spread is my favourite and shows Santa giving the Jolly Postman a ride home in his sleigh. There are so many fairytale and nursery rhyme characters to look at as they prepare for their Christmas festivities that it takes a while to read the story!
This is a lovely seasonal book to use in the classroom. I have used The Jolly Christmas postman to introduce writing letters to Father Christmas, addressing an envelope and children have made their own Christmas cards. A particularly nice activity is making a Christmas card for your favourite fairytale or nursery rhyme character. We’ve also made a wall map to show the Jolly Postman’s route. The Jolly Christmas Postman would also be a lovely story to re- enact for a school Christmas play.
The Jolly Christmas Postman is a beautifully illustrated, timeless picture book. I love reading it at Christmas, it even inspired us to make our own Red Riding Hood board game!
Authors: Janet and Allan Ahlberg / Illustrator: Janet Ahlberg