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Tens and Teens

edited by Opal Dunn, illustrated by Hannah Shaw

Age Range: 3 - 5

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 2010
ISBN: 978-1-84507-957-4
Publisher: Frances Lincoln

Thirteen rhymes invite readers to explore numbers and counting, three addressing the teens and one the tens. These cover counting to 20, doubling up to a sum of 24, counting down by ones from 12, counting down by twos from as high as 20 and counting down by tens from 100. Repetition is the name of the game, and youngsters will either learn their numbers or lose interest. Bright colors and quirky characters fill Shaw’s pen-and-ink illustrations, which also include scanned textures. While the author provides a “key” for deciphering numbers greater than 20 (“teen means 10…[and] ty means lots of 10”), indicating a school-age audience, there are also a few rhymes that are preschool favorites, leading to a disconnect as to the target age of this volume. A murky note will leave readers wondering about the provenance of the rhymes, some of which are traditional and some, perhaps, not. Falling well short of its title, this collection just does not add up to the fun and learning of Dunn’s previous Number Rhymes to Say and Play. (table of contents, index of first lines) (Nursery rhymes. 3-5)