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61 percent of low-income families have no books at all in their homes for their children.
Summary: Classic nursery rhymes include photograph substitutes for words to entice the child to read along out loud. This is a picture book that offers guided opportunities to help emerging begin to grasp the concepts of reading.
Type of Reading: family reading, anytime reading, playtime reading, read aloud book
Recommended Age: read together: 3 to 8; read yourself: 6 to 9
Interest Level: 3 to 7
Age of Child: Read with a nearly 3-year-old girl.
Young Reader Reaction: My daughter enjoyed hearing her classic rhymes but she did not understand all of the representative pictures. For example, in the nursery rhyme "Old King Cole," she did not know what a pipe is (nor do I wish to explain what a pipe is to her at this age).
Adult Reader Reaction: I always enjoy some classic nursery rhymes but this book was not enjoyable. There were too many picture substitutes, including some beyond my child's understanding (a pipe, a tuffet, a diamond ring).
Pros: Nice, happy drawings complement these classic nursery rhymes. The images that give emerging readers a chance to try their hand at reading words they know but cannot yet recognize.
Cons: My child could not recognize the pictures printed in lieu of words, which was frustrating. The illustrations may be too obscure for some children. Most will not know what a tuffet is, or that a ring is meant to be the "diamond in the sky." Perhaps the author could have drawn an ear of corn, rather than tall green stalks with a tiny bit of yellow on top.
Borrow or Buy: Borrow. Sharing nursery rhymes can be stretched into early elementary ages, but once your children develop as readers, they will look to other stories.
Educational Themes: This is a picture book that can double as an early reader. The classic nursery rhymes are ones children are familiar with and have the oral vocabulary to recite, just not the written recognition for the words. Because some objects (tuffets) may not be familiar to your child, it is an opportunity to teach them about synonyms, too.
Notes: The publisher donated a copy of this book knowing that we would consider it for review and provide an independent, unbiased profile. This book will be given to a nonprofit to help readers in need.