Monday, June 18, 2012

SPL Shelf Life [kids]


Builder Goose: It’s Construction Rhyme Time! By Boni Ashburn, 26 pages.
In Builder Goose: It’s Construction Rhyme Time, preschoolers will love listening to author Boni Ashburn’s clever renditions of twenty-two favourite Mother Goose nursery rhymes,set in a busy construction site.
Instead of “Hey diddle diddle / the cat and the fiddle”, preschoolers will hear “Hey diddle diddle / this hard hat is little / but needed on every job site / If a wrench gets dropped, or a 2 by 4 falls / you’ll see why it’s worn day and night!”
Remember the itsy-bitsy spider which climbed up the waterspout?  In Builder Goose, the spider becomes an itsy-bitsy skid steer: “The itsy-bitsy skid steer / drove up the steep dirt hill / stockpiled rock with nimbleness and skill / Up came the loader / to haul it all away / and the itsy-bitsy skid steer / kept working hard all day.”
“Here we go around the mulberry bush” becomes “Here we go around the construction site”, and “Simple Simon met a pieman going to the fair” becomes “Simple survey, measure that way, measure this way too”.
“Baa baa black sheep, have you any wool?” has been rewritten as “Bump bump wheelbarrow, have you any nails?”
Ashburn’s catchy construction rhymes, all of which feature various animals as the construction workers, along with Sergio De Giorgi’s colourful illustrations, will be a definite hit with the many preschoolers who are fascinated by diggers, dump trucks, cranes, hard hats and other construction equipment.
Parents and grandparents might find this to be an ideal time to also introduce or reintroduce some traditional nursery rhymes to young children.
** Recommended for ages 2 to 5 years.
 
Froggy Builds a Tree House, by Jack London, 30 pages.
Look out – trouble-prone (but lovable) Froggy is back in a new misadventure!
Froggy and his friends – Bear, Beaver and Turtle - are building a tree house (with lots of help from his dad).  The friends have visions of a wonderful hideaway where they can stow away and enjoy pizza parties during the summer.
Froggy is his usual awkward self, dropping nails, a hammer and a board on his father’s hard hat. His friends encounter some mishaps too, but finally, the tree house is finished.
Now Froggy and his friends decide that girls will not be allowed. “Boys only!” announces Froggy.
Needless to say, his little sister, Frogilina, is quite unhappy with this decision!
Later, when Froggy and his friends try unsuccessfully to haul a pizza up to the tree house, Frogilina saves the day when she catches the pizza and brings it up to the house – along with a generous helping of flies for Froggy’s piece.
Froggy and friends reconsider their “Boys only” rule and all ends well in this latest offering from author Jonathan London and illustrator Frank Remkiewicz, who have collaborated on all of the comical and very popular Froggy stories.      
** Recommended for ages 3 to 6 years.

These reviews appeared in The Stratford Gazette on June 14, 2012. Written by Sally Hengeveld, Librarian

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