This whale of a metaphor requires adult assistance to really flow.

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YOGA WHALE

SIMPLE POSES FOR LITTLE ONES

Following the pattern set in Yoga Bug and Yoga Bear (2017, 2018), 10 toddlers model yoga poses whimsically named after sea creatures.

Their varied skin tones, hairstyles, and yoga clothes, which match the coloring of their animal partners, stand out against solid-color backgrounds. The brief text describes both animal behavior and the depicted child’s actions. Appropriately, Hinder begins and ends with deep breathing and relaxation, starting with deep breathing that makes “your tummy grow,” illustrated by a puffer fish, and finishing with a “sparkly stretch,” illustrated by a smiling “Starfish.” In between, her fanciful descriptions of yoga poses are not always useful. Young children unfamiliar with sea horses may be mystified by that metaphor. The poses emulating a dolphin and a crab are clear, but “Shark” (for boat or locust pose) or “Sea Urchin” for child pose are a stretch. A child in happy-baby pose waving four limbs is paired with an eight-legged octopus. The picture of a child in a wide-legged forward fold (“Jellyfish”) does not indicate how to move into the position. Thankfully, the final spread includes a thumbnail picture of each child in their posture along with the common name of that pose and clear instructions in small print.

This whale of a metaphor requires adult assistance to really flow. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: Feb. 5, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-68364-076-9

Page Count: 22

Publisher: Sounds True

Review Posted Online: March 3, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 2019

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Adults looking for an easy entry into this subject will not be disappointed.

CLIMATE CHANGE FOR BABIES

From the Baby University series

This book presents a simplified explanation of the role the atmosphere plays in controlling climate.

The authors present a planet as a ball and its atmosphere as a blanket that envelops the ball. If the blanket is thick, the planet will be hot, as is the case for Venus. If the blanket is thin, the planet is cold, as with Mars. Planet Earth has a blanket that traps “just the right amount of heat.” The authors explain trees, animals, and oceans are part of what makes Earth’s atmosphere “just right.” “But…Uh-oh! People on Earth are changing the blanket!” The book goes on to explain how some human activities are sending “greenhouse gases” into the atmosphere, thus “making the blanket heavier and thicker” and “making Earth feel unwell.” In the case of a planet feeling unwell, what would the symptoms be? Sea-level rises that lead to erosion, flooding, and island loss, along with extreme weather events, such as hurricanes, blizzards, and wildfires. Ending on a constructive note, the authors name a few of the remedies to “help our Earth before it’s too late!” By using the blanket analogy, alongside simple and clear illustrations, this otherwise complex topic becomes very accessible to young children, though caregivers will need to help with the specialized vocabulary.

Adults looking for an easy entry into this subject will not be disappointed. (Board book. 3-4)

Pub Date: Aug. 18, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-4926-8082-6

Page Count: 24

Publisher: Sourcebooks eXplore

Review Posted Online: Sept. 1, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15, 2020

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More information than toddlers will sit still for; not enough for preschoolers who are outgrowing board books.

MY BODY

From the Hello World! series

An introduction to the body for the youngest readers.

It’s an endlessly fascinating topic, but here it is explained in wordy and needlessly exclamatory detail. On the opening spread three children play: One flies a kite, another plays hopscotch, and a third hangs upside down from a branch while the text explains that “your body can do so many things!” Basic facts about each body part are explained on subsequent spreads—more or less. A spread devoted to the belly button gives no hint to its original purpose. A busy park scene with all the characters and summary text that emphasizes the importance of “Lots of sleep, good food, and plenty of exercise” ends this compendium. McDonald’s attempts to be inclusive don’t quite succeed. A brown-skinned boy playing wheelchair basketball is used to explain arm joints, and there are several other children of color in the book. But on the page about hearing, the brown-skinned tot’s prominent ears and his placement in a tree make him look more like a monkey than a child—an unfortunate association. Many spreads include a question that relates to the topic but could also prove distracting. An additional fact on each spread set in a smaller font is clearly for older children or grown-ups, not toddlers.

More information than toddlers will sit still for; not enough for preschoolers who are outgrowing board books. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: Feb. 13, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-5247-6636-8

Page Count: 27

Publisher: Doubleday

Review Posted Online: May 23, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2018

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