Tots in training will find this a helpful and entertaining playbook.

POTTY ALL-STAR

A young, diaper-wearing basketball player makes a play to use the potty.

The tyke, with amber skin, brown eyes, and neck-length brown hair held in place with a sports headband, takes a couple of “shots” at using the toilet and is unsuccessful. The sports language continues as the youngster is coached by a grown-up, continues to train, heads for the “hoop” (aka the toilet seat), and successfully makes it to the potty before the buzzer sounds. Three grown-ups, likely immediate and extended family members, all with medium brown skin tones, act as the cheering crowd. All the stages of using the toilet are modeled, including flushing (which is the “swish” of the basketball net) and hand-washing. The toddler receives a new uniform—a pair of underpants—and closes by encouraging readers to keep on practicing. While the sports metaphors may go over lots of little heads, this gender-neutral title breaks down the steps for using the potty clearly and concisely in the punchy and positive text. Burach’s illustrations are lively and animated and employ warm, bright colors. Appropriately enough, the characters resemble bobblehead dolls with their large eyes and oversized heads.

Tots in training will find this a helpful and entertaining playbook. (Board book. 1-4)

Pub Date: Sept. 3, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-338-28933-6

Page Count: 22

Publisher: Scholastic

Review Posted Online: Sept. 24, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 2019

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

This will have readers putting on their dancing shoes to do the “cha cha cha” with their dino-babies

DINOSAUR DANCE!

It's not the first time dinosaurs have been featured in a clever Boynton board book. It seems she—and we—can't get enough.

As her fans know, Boynton has a sly wit that respects the intelligence of her young fans and amuses the adults asked to “read it again.” In this book she introduces nine dinosaurs, each of which dances in a way that seems totally appropriate for that particular species. “The blue Stegosaurus goes SHIMMY SHIMMY SHAKE. / The red Brontosaurus goes QUIVERY QUAKE.” Drawing on her experience as a children’s musician, she writes a text that trips along like a song with rhymes that make sense but don't intrude. The illustrations, typical Boynton, reflect her greeting-card background. They are cartoonish but manage to capture the unique personality of each creature. The unnamed dinosaur narrator looks genuinely distraught at not being able to name the “tiny little dino” that “goes DEEDLY DEE.” Spoiler alert: the tiny little dinosaur is probably Compsognathus and would be about the size of a small chicken. Young dinophiles would be impressed if the dinosaurologists in their lives could supply that factoid, but alas, they will have to look it up.

This will have readers putting on their dancing shoes to do the “cha cha cha” with their dino-babies . (Board book. 1-3)

Pub Date: Aug. 30, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-4814-8099-4

Page Count: 16

Publisher: Little Simon/Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: Oct. 12, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2017

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

Take it, or leave it.

THE ITSY BITSY SNOWMAN

A wintertime story that can be sung to the tune of “The Itsy Bitsy Spider.”

The itsy bitsy snowman and his friends are playing in the snow. They climb up a snowy hill, jump on a sled, slide fast, and zip past children skating on ice. Then, though the text tells readers that he “dodged a snowball fight,” his head becomes separated from his body. Not to worry, “out came his friends / to lend a happy hand.” In the last spread the itsy bitsy snowman stands with his mom, dad, and friends, “And everything was perfect / in his winter wonderland.” The story, intended to be read to the tune of the beloved nursery rhyme, doesn’t always quite fit the template, as in: “The itsy bitsy snowman / climbed up the snowy hill. // He jumped on a sled / and slid fast…what a thrill!” For no obvious reason, on every page one word is printed in a different color from the rest of the text. Rescek’s illustrations are bright, cheery, and cartoonlike, with an appropriate wintry pale blue as the dominant color. Though sweet and cute, there is nothing particularly fresh or new here.

Take it, or leave it. (Board book. 1-2)

Pub Date: Sept. 22, 2015

ISBN: 978-1-4814-4837-6

Page Count: 16

Publisher: Little Simon/Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: Sept. 16, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2016

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet
more