A simple introduction to sign language, with movable parts.
A multiracial cast of toddlers, with skin tones ranging from pale white to deep brown, demonstrate eight common signs (“eat,” “milk,” “more,” “all done,” “help,” “thank you,” “bath,” and “bed”) that help the very young bridge the communication gap and mitigate frustration. A pull-tab on the right-hand side or top of the page allows little readers to complete the sign modeled on the page with sliding or fold-out arms, hands, or digits, although some tabs are easier to pull than others. Simple text on the left-hand page sets the scene: “When baby is tired, baby signs BED.” Yu’s flat cartoons in bright hues resemble cut paper and stand out against the boldly colored backgrounds. The final double-page spread reviews the signs with simple graphics, re-enacted by a diverse group of adults this time, and a one- or two-sentence caption providing more direction. The biggest concerns here are with the book’s longevity. While the tabs are sturdy, little fingers will likely pull off the hands and arms, making them potential choking hazards, and the binding may fail even sooner.
Handsome and useful—but not for independent exploration. Caregivers should use it with their children for safety’s sake. (Board book. 6 mos.-2)