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*The Me Book* by Jean Tymms, illustrated by Tibor Gergely

The Me Book
by Jean Tymms, illustrated by Tibor Gergely
Ages 4-8 24 pages Golden Books September 2005 Board book    

The distinguishing feature on an owl is the eyes. On a lion, the mane stands out. And on a frog, it’s definitely the legs and feet. Jean Tymms has written a book where animals demonstrate, in a playful way, how the senses work and how the body can move. Children know eyes are for looking, but they will see they can also wink with their eyes and find things with their eyes. Donkey’s great big ears are good for listening and wiggling, but will children think about how ears can hold up eyeglasses? Will they realize hair keeps heads warm? Now they will know.

This could very well be an interactive book. On the pages about the ear, the author asks “Can you wiggle your ears?” and on the last page of the book, “What do you like to do?” Older children can try to wiggle their ears and tell what they like to do. Parents, with their younger children, can mimic what they see the animals doing on all the pages. They can smile like the pig, make muscles like the monkey, and tickle like the koala bear.

At the end of the book, children see how they can use their whole body. Climbing to the top of a slide, hiding under the bed, somersaulting on the ground, and playing catch with a ball are reminders of how all their body parts and senses enable them to move and play in variety of ways.

The illustrations are in soft-colored tones. Some of the animals wear clothing and hats, and some even sleep in human beds. One animal holds a job, and many of the animals do very human things. The cat is a pedicurist, and the lion gets a haircut from a barber. Everyone in the book looks very happy and full of life - even the elephant with the bandaged knees. The animals, just as the children, are of various ages, from crawlers to school-age. The children are of various ethnicities and in a variety of dress.

The Me Book, a Golden Book, was originally published in 1974; this is a re-release in board book format (A Golden Sturdy book). The tall, narrow pages are not too busy with words or pictures, especially suitable for babies and toddlers.

Children tend to be fascinated with animals. The animals in this book can educate children. They will see what the animals can do, and children can copy those actions with their own bodies - and add a few actions of their very own!

Children's board book reviews for babies and toddlers

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  Tanya Boudreau/2006 for curled up with a good kid's book  

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