Which picture books have sparkled under our speech pathology lens this month? As you may know already, as speechies and mums, Tania and I look for books with robust vocabulary, strong story structure, captivating illustrations and to be frank, sound good when read aloud as picture books needs to be read aloud to young children and when they sound good, it is easier for parent and child to enjoy them time and time again.
So here’s a round-up of our top 3 this month:
1. Pippa by Dimity Powell and Andrew Plant
Inspired by her childhood memories, Australian author Dimity Powell has just won the Society of Children’s Book Writer and Illustrators (SCBWI) 2019 Crystal Kite award. Pippa the pigeon embarks on an adventure beyond her nest, with this book beautifully navigating the themes of letting go, risk taking, embracing change and adversity. It presents scenarios of ‘cause and consequence’, which is cognitively and developmentally appropriate for pre-schoolers.
Reading tips: When reading this book, you can take opportunity to make comments about the character’s feelings, intentions and evaluate their actions e.g., “It would’ve been scary for Pippa to make that choice when others told her not do so.”
2. Horatio Squeak by Karen Foxlee and Evie Barrow
Beloved Australian author Karen Foxlee has published her debut character-driven, rhyming picture book with illustrations by Melbournian Evie Barrow. Horatio Squeak is a timid and polite mouse who gets invited into a mysterious party with some kittens upstairs. When the kittens can’t resist the urge to catch a bird in the window, Horatio must find the courage to speak up and save the scared bird. This picture book provides ample opportunities to make inferences and discuss the character’s feelings. encouraging conversations that will strengthen any child’s comprehension skills.
Reading tips: Discuss lesser known vocabulary that you may not usually use in everyday conversation but helpful for reading comprehension such as ‘dread’ and ‘trembling’.
3. Abigail and the Birth of the Sun by Matthew Cunningham and Sarah Wilkins
Matthew Cunningham’s own daughter Abigail has inspired what he hopes is the first of a series of books aimed at encouraging scientific literacy and curiousity among children in the pre-school age bracket. A magical night-time adventure as curious Abigail asks questions about the beginnings of the solar system and beyond, it’s a scene that I’m sure is familiar to all parents when our children ask us those big questions about life that we don’t simply have a one-line answer for.
Reading tips: Relate your child’s own experiences to the book and vice versa. “When we look at stars at night, it looks just like in this book – a black background with tiny little dots that are the stars.
Well that’s a wrap on the new titles we are excited about this month. Let us know in the comments if you enjoy these books!
If you love the reading tips, you will enjoy other posts on our blog (check out here. here and here) and you can see if our book boxes are right for you. Each book boxes comes with two fantastic picture books and six activities that can be enjoyed by all 3-6 year olds. Go to our SHOP page to see more.
Thanks for hearing our call,
Your Little Birdies