I’ve read a number of notable books over the past year – mostly about the French Riviera and its history – but today I’m teaming up with two tough critics aged 3 years and 8 years of age to review the Usborne book title, ‘My Very First Animals Book’.
Reading a book with your children is excellent for literacy development but most importantly it’s a great bonding activity, something that can’t be replicated by plonking your children in front of a screen. We try and read each night and I’d much prefer my boys spend their time reading a book than watching TV or sitting on their iPad, however reality isn’t always cohesive to parenting 🙂
The great thing about Usborne Books is older kids think it’s cool to read to their younger siblings because the books are FUN to read, so kids don’t think it’s a geeky thing to do.
My Very First Animals : Usborne
My Very First Animals is written by Alice James and illustrated by Lee Cosgrove with animal expert Dr Owen Lewis adding to the creation of a fantastic book filled with colourful illustrations and facts about the animal world.
A key feature of this book is that each section is spread across two pages, meaning it’s easy to grasp the concepts and simple to understand. Sections include:
A place to live highlighting the various homes where animals live in
Wings and feathers with facts about birds
Deadly weapons with information about the different ways that animals defend themselves or hunt for food
Hot or cold shows children the various geographic environments animals exist such as the desert or Arctic
Sending messages gives facts about the sounds and smells animals use to communicate such as dolphin clicks, skunks spraying or birds singing
Animal journeys shows how animals move around to find food, better climates or to lay their eggs
My son’s favourite bits in this Usborne book were :
My favourite part is the Growing Up section which has drawings about animals as they get older – Lucas, 8 years
I like the Patterns page with the colours animals use to hide, and I like the map where you learn where animals come from in the world – Josh, 3 years
Why we love Usborne Books?
We’ve purchased many Usborne Books over the years and have always found them to be great quality with durable card-like pages and easy to clean surfaces. Here’s a breakdown why we love them:
- The prices are reasonable for the quality and content.
- As a parent, I particularly love their range for ages between preschool and primary school because the illustrations are always excellent and the text is educational without being mind-numbingly overpacked with facts!
- The books encourage little readers to explore words, vocabulary and conversation via fun elements such as textures to touch, questions, quizzes about how things work or spot the difference challenges.
- For older kids, the books have the right amount of educational snippets that boost literacy and questioning the world around them – in fact, my 8-year old recalls amazing facts about the world, particularly animals a lot!
Additionally, I’d like to mention that Usborne’s ‘That’s not my….’ series and their ‘Lift-the-Flap‘ books are super sturdy and long-lasting compared to many brands. The flaps are hard-wearing – we have tried and tested many ‘lift the flap’ books in our household and to be honest with many books on the market the quality is lacking. It’s disappointing to buy a book and the flaps are opened and closed a few times then rip or fall off (or is that just in our household!). Pretty embarrassing if you give a book as a gift for a kids birthday and it disintegrates. So, keep that in mind if you’re looking to buy or gift a ‘lift the flap’ book to purchase one that can withstand constant repetitive opening and closing like the Usborne ones can!
I’m happy to recommend the Usborne range as our books have survived grubby toddler fingers, being used as construction bases for figurine action play, book battles being dropped from bunk beds and various other tests that my active boys have unknowingly put them through.
Disclaimer: Access Riviera was gifted the Usborne book ‘My Very First Animals Book’, however all opinions are my own. Thank you to Carys’ Little Bookshop for providing such a fun book!
Carys Little Bookshop is an independent Usborne organiser and has plenty of age-specific books for babies, toddlers and older kids so get in touch with her if you’re on the French Riviera or in France and looking for gift ideas or to boost your own child/ren’s library. You can ‘Like’ her page on Facebook here, or ‘Follow’ her updates on Instagram at www.instagram.com/carys_little_bookshop