Although toddlers and preschoolers may enjoy the sliders, this book doesn’t establish an impressive identity as either a...

SLIDE AND FIND DINOSAURS

From the Scholastic Early Learners series

This board book features dinosaurs, interactive sliders, and the numbers one through 10.

One large dinosaur is shown on each double-page spread, along with three bright-colored sliders that are fun for little fingers to slide and explore. A bold, contrasting numeral is printed on each slider, and that number is spelled out in lowercase letters. Each slider moves either vertically or horizontally by means of a small finger hole or two, revealing a group of dinosaurs corresponding to the number on the slider. Each dinosaur is named, and its pronunciation is included, but no further information is given. The dinosaurs are not rendered to scale. The main dinosaur in each double-page spread is large, familiar, relatively detailed, and vividly textured (Tyrannosaurus rex, Velociraptor, etc.), while the dinosaurs in the sliding windows are much smaller, less familiar, and may be difficult for young children to count and pronounce. Some questions posed do not connect with the right numbers; “How many horns does Triceratops have?” is asked on the spread that presents numerals 4 and 5, while “How many legs does Ankylosaurus have?” is featured along with numerals 9 and 10.

Although toddlers and preschoolers may enjoy the sliders, this book doesn’t establish an impressive identity as either a counting book or a book about dinosaurs. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: Dec. 27, 2016

ISBN: 978-0-545-90346-2

Page Count: 8

Publisher: Scholastic

Review Posted Online: Dec. 14, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2017

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Innovative and thoroughly enjoyable.

ANIMAL SHAPES

You think you know shapes? Animals? Blend them together, and you might see them both a little differently!

What a mischievous twist on a concept book! With wordplay and a few groan-inducing puns, Neal creates connections among animals and shapes that are both unexpected and so seemingly obvious that readers might wonder why they didn’t see them all along. Of course, a “lazy turtle” meeting an oval would create the side-splitting combo of a “SLOW-VAL.” A dramatic page turn transforms a deeply saturated, clean-lined green oval by superimposing a head and turtle shell atop, with watery blue ripples completing the illusion. Minimal backgrounds and sketchy, impressionistic detailing keep the focus right on the zany animals. Beginning with simple shapes, the geometric forms become more complicated as the book advances, taking readers from a “soaring bird” that meets a triangle to become a “FLY-ANGLE” to a “sleepy lion” nonagon “YAWN-AGON.” Its companion text, Animal Colors, delves into color theory, this time creating entirely hybrid animals, such as the “GREEN WHION” with maned head and whale’s tail made from a “blue whale and a yellow lion.” It’s a compelling way to visualize color mixing, and like Animal Shapes, it’s got verve. Who doesn’t want to shout out that a yellow kangaroo/green moose blend is a “CHARTREUSE KANGAMOOSE”?

Innovative and thoroughly enjoyable. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: March 27, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-4998-0534-5

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Little Bee Books

Review Posted Online: May 14, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 1, 2018

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Young dino fans will enjoy it, though their grown-ups may not.

NOISY DINOSAURS

From the My First Touch and Feel Sound Book series

What sounds did dinosaurs make? We don't really know.

Litton suggests some possibilities while introducing sophisticated vocabulary in a board-book format. Five dinosaurs are featured: Tyrannosaurus rex, Stegosaurus, Pterodactyl, Diplodocus, and Triceratops. For each species there is a brief description that highlights its distinctive features, followed by an invitation to hear and repeat the dinosaur's sound. There is no explanation for why scientists think T. Rex “roared,” Stegosaurus “howled,” Pterodactyl “screeched,” Diplodocus “growled,” or Triceratops “grunted.” The author tries to avoid sexism, carefully referring to two of the creatures as “she,” but those two are also described in stereotypically less-ferocious terms than the male dinos. The touch point on the Pterodactyl is a soft section of wing. Readers are told that Diplodocus “loved splashing in swamps,” and the instruction is to “tickle her tummy to hear her growl,” implying that this giant creature was gentle and friendly. None of this may matter to young paleontologists, who will enjoy finding the tactile section on each creature that triggers the sound. Despite extensive directions in small print, most parents and libraries won't bother to change the battery secured by a tiny hex screw, but while the battery lasts, the book will get lots of play.

Young dino fans will enjoy it, though their grown-ups may not. (Board book. 2-4)

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 2015

ISBN: 978-1-58925-207-3

Page Count: 12

Publisher: Tiger Tales

Review Posted Online: Aug. 5, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2016

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