Britannica’s Baby Encyclopedia
Sally Symes, illustrated by Hanako Clulow
With just over seventy pages in all, this board book first encyclopaedia is divided into sections: our world, animals, plants, body, food, machines, art & music, shapes and numbers, every one of which is beautifully illustrated in bold colours. Each section begins and ends with a full page picture and the accompanying suitably simple text is thoughtfully worded to read like an opening and finale.
For example Our World starts thus: ‘Our world is a place called Earth. In the morning, the sun comes up and the day begins.’ and concludes, ‘At the end of the day, the moon and stars light up the night sky.’ So, it would work well if an adult and child shared the book, one section per sitting. Little ones will love joining in with all the ‘sound’ words: this section has ‘Plip-plop!’ ‘Flitter! Flutter!’, ‘Gurgle! Burble!, ‘Crash! Smash!’ and several farm animal noises.
Just the right amount of information is included in each section to engage small children, while also enhancing their vocabulary and knowledge.(A consultant Dr Amanda Gummer was used to this end.) It’s good to see that care has been taken to include a diverse range of humans in every topic presented.
A book to add to family collections if there is a very young child.
Patricia Hegarty and Thomas Elliott
This ‘pull the sliders, change the picture’ title takes little ones to various natural locations where it’s time for the fauna to go to sleep. First visit is the forest wherein there are rabbits, deer, a fox, a mouse and a nesting bird. Which one is nocturnal and needs waking with the help of the slider?
The savannah animals all seem to have shut their eyes already except for one; he needs help to get to sleep. The deep sea has lots of sleepy creatures large and small but one with eight limbs needs the reader’s help. After helping whichever of the rainforest animals is wide awake, it’s the turn of little humans including one very bouncy person who has to stop all those boings.
A fun, interactive bedtime book for the very youngest children who will enjoy assisting the animals before nodding off themselves.