I came across this book by chance in the wonderful Charlie Byrne’s Bookshop in Galway and immediately fell in love with it. Luckily my kids agree and I highly recommend this as a staple in the library of any preschooler.
Why is it so good?
All those elements that preschoolers love including lots of simple language and repetition, adorable characters and great illustrations. In terms of visuals this book also has a little game where you can try and guess what animal they are going to see from the actions that she is doing with her monkey. These simple actions are followed up with fantastic realistic drawings of the actual animals and there are little quirks to be spotted throughout (watch out for the monkey who has stolen the banana from his friend). The words are so catchy that it can then become a game where someone mimes the animals and the others have to guess – always handy for waiting rooms etc!
And in school?
Many, many possibilities! While there are only a few animals actually mentioned they are an interesting mix ranging from easy (monkey and elephant) to trickier (bat) so there is something for everyone to name. Many possibilities for expanding this out into a game or even a dance or drama where students act out the animals. I have used it as a sort of ‘follow the leader’ game in pe and also for my most successful ever drama class in a special school (with the aid of model animals for illustration). The repetition would also make this a good one for early readers to develop confidence.
Every infant class and special school should have a copy of this book. I can’t recommend it enough!