Being an English teacher, it will come as no surprise to you that I feel that reading (at any age) is an incredibly important life skill. Papa Bear and I have been reading to little Bear since he was born (and earlier to be fair). The sound of Mama and Papa’s voice is reassuring and comforting for newborns, but despite being a major chatterbox I sometimes felt a little silly talking to little Bear even though I knew the more I do will help him with his language development. I mean ‘what do I say to a one day old baby?’ So naturally I turned to reading.
More recently, little Bear has become obsessed with touching a range of different fabrics around our house – the sofa, cushions, zips, labels, you name it, if it has a texture that is somewhat new to him, he’s all over it. We had a number of fabric books for him, over the last week he has mastered being able to turn pages in books on his own (proud English teacher Mama Bear right here), so the fabric books, great as they are, I felt would no longer be enough to stimulate his interests and development.
I had heard lots of positive talk about these ‘That’s not my…’ books by Usborne and I thought it would be a great time to invest in a few titles; cue a trip to Sainsbury’s, where I had seen that they were being sold for half the £6.99 RRP, and we had our first few titles. Now it was time to see what all the hype was about…
To say that they have been a hit would be an understatement!
Little Bear absolutely love them and so do I too – That’s not my dinosaur… and That’s not my hedgehog… in particular.
What’s so great about them?
Firstly, there is a great variety of different textures in these touchy-feely books and they are integrated in really interesting ways. I love how in each instance it is a different body part, which helps me to talk to little Bear about his own anatomy. The textures themselves are great and quite unusual, we especially love the velcro, felt and furry textures at the moment.
Secondly, the simple illustrations are gorgeous and have a very friendly feel about them. There are lots of eye catching and brightly coloured images which are brilliant for his development, as whilst we read through the books we are able to discuss the different colours on each page. Personally, I loved that in That’s not my dinosaur there were different types of dinosaur too so we could talk about different breeds, but don’t worry there are no scary tyrannosaurus rex dinos in here – he’s made to look very friendly with his ‘bumpy’ teeth!
Also, they are just long enough to hold his interest without him getting bored and wanting to jump off my lap and a great size for little hands. At 7 and a half months old he can pick up and hold the book by himself. The thickness of the pages (these are board books) means that he can easily lift and turn the pages too – he often likes to turn back to the previous page after we’ve read and explored it.
Finally, for those of you who remember reading Usborne books yourselves as a child the mouse on every page feels like a hark back to the little yellow duck that I used to try and find on every page when reading these books when I was little.
Mama Bear x