Ten Little Dogs / Ten Little Yoga Frogs

Ten Little Dogs
Ruth Brown
Scallywag Press

Who can fail to delight in this rhyming countdown by well-loved and respected author/illustrator Ruth Brown. Her array of pooches look such engaging creatures as they romp energetically in all kinds of settings indoors and out with their number diminishing on each double spread

until just one remains. But not for long because being alone is not nearly as much fun as dashing off to rejoin your nine friends cavorting and barking loudly in the park.

Yes there’s some simple maths herein but it’s the spirited illustrations that count for much of the pleasure to be discovered between the covers of this book. Every double spread is a visual feast with detailed, realistic images of adorable canines in beautiful surroundings, accompanied by a four line text with perfectly calculated page turns.
A treat for dog lovers of all ages, this.

Ten Little Yoga Frogs
Hilary Robinson and Mandy Stanley
Catch a Star

This is a fun way to engage in some counting practice while at the same time trying some basic yoga poses along with the snazzily attired yogi frogs.

Wearing both my foundation stage teacher hat and my yoga teacher hat simultaneously, I absolutely love this rhyming counting book. It’s great to see that not all the participants are experts at doing the poses: take a look at these three.

And who wouldn’t want to respond with a resounding yes to the invitation on the final spread …

With its predictable text and hilarious illustrations (each spread has a small box in the corner showing the specific yoga asana the frogs are doing) this book would make a smashing addition to any early years setting or foundation stage classroom, as well as being one to add to family collections where there are young children.

A Gallery of Cats

A Gallery of Cats
Ruth Brown
Scallywag Press

Tom who is visiting an art gallery with his granny wanders off into a side room where something quite amazing happens.

As he stands reading a label beside the Jackson exhibit, out of the painting leaps a cat. Tom follows it.

Seemingly there’s been a feline invasion for from almost a dozen works of art that closely resemble famous masterpieces, there appear in turn as Tom pauses to read the labels to his guide Jackson, cats named Gustav, Piet, Frida, René, Vincent, Maukie & Cornelis, Kats,

Henri, Edvard,

William and Samuel.

Eventually with a bevy of assorted cats at his feet Tom turns a corner and there before him is the famous Rousseau-like tiger.

At the sight of this the other felines turn tail and dash back to their own paintings; not Jackson though; he at least waits to bid farewell to the boy while his gran looks at the notice announcing a new exhibition; no prizes for guessing what the topic is.

Cleverly conceived and superbly executed in her own painterly style, Ruth Brown presents a playful introduction to the work of thirteen world famous artists. Cat lovers and primary teachers in particular will love this novel way of bringing their work to life for children who have yet to see the real pictures.