Make This Book Wild
Jo Schofield & Fiona Danks, illustrated by Anna Ivanir
Wide Eyed Editions
If you know a child who is fond of sketching, drawing – observational or otherwise, writing and who enjoys being in the great outdoors, then this is for them. With some sixty nature-themed activities it’s a great way to gently encourage children to observe the natural world, to have fun and be creative, the idea being to make the book look as wild as possible. That of course means that when they go out, the book needs to go too (along with some drawing materials and probably some of the other items listed on the ‘how to use this book’ page).
Before sallying forth however, the user must be made aware of the safety precautions in the front, as well as remembering the five points of the ‘protect nature’ code. Thereafter there’s freedom to make the book dirty, stick in items, draw or paint on the pages, possibly using natural tools like feathers or pine needles collected -and perhaps with some of the mud, the berry or leaf juice you’ve extracted. I like the idea of making ‘berry beasties’ by collecting a few ripe edible berries, placing them between the relevant pages, closing the book, jumping on it and following the rest of the instructions (I’d go for using separate paper and sticking in the results.)
If writing’s more your child’s thing then there are opportunities for list making (from observations), poem and story writing and more; you can even write about your ‘dragon hunt’. Science and imagination comes together in this fun-filled book and it’s all about encouraging youngsters to observe nature closely and enjoy so doing. I know a lot of children who would love to get their hands (and feet) on a copy of this.