First of all, we are very sorry for not being as active on our blog recently. We’ve had a few sad weeks in the past few months but we’re feeling much better now!
For those of you who live in and around Merseyside, you may be familiar with Little Scribbles. Little Scribbles run storytelling sessions for all ages, have an online shop and are a Barefoot Books ambassador. They very kindly sent us a copy of Barefoot Book’s new singalong book, The Wheels On The Bus.
Barefoot Books are independent publishers whose stories are culturally and ethnically diverse, something that isn’t all that common in a lot of children’s books today. The Wheels On The Bus is written as you would sing the traditional children’s rhyme, but with a Guatemalan twist! The CD that accompanies the book can be played on computers and other such modern devices, or in the car, and has an animated video with lively vocals too! At the back, there are interesting facts about Guatemala (perfect for future explorers!) and two bars of sheet music for budding musicians to follow along.
The illustrations are so colourful, using a similar colour palette to traditional Guatemalan art, and it definitely looks a bit different to other children’s books. Facial expressions, baskets, scenery and even runaway chickens are all so detailed!
The story is written to the tune of the well known children’s rhyme. What we liked best was that, when the bus needed a tyre change, it was the mummies who found the tyre and the granny who did the changing! Small details like this can go unnoticed but showing women doing more tasks usually associated with men is a great step in empowering girls from a young age. Also, the book is quite short so it can engage younger babies as well as toddlers and children who are struggling to read or have short attention spans. We really enjoyed it and we’ve had the CD on in the car too!
We had an amazing response to our tweet looking for reviewers, so look out for those soon!