Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Transition: Board Books to Picture Books

The transition from board books to hardcover and paperback can be tricky for little ones.  There will torn pages and yes the corners of the book will be torn and tattered.  One of my pet peeves is when the books are put away with the pages all open and shoved with other books in between.  Like I said, transitioning can be tricky!  At our house we transitioned first to Easy Reader sized paperbacks and Little Golden Books.  While these books were convenient and cheaply replaced, the real treasure is getting to enjoy large picture books with pages full of huge illustrations and lovely stories that you can really sink your teeth into while reading.  Of course, these books might be parent held with parents turning pages at first.  You might even want to start by sharing these books while your little one is otherwise occupied in a high chair or holding a drink.   Now, my own Lil Guy has gotten to the point where he can independently enjoy paperback and hardback books.  We still have some torn pages and our bookshelves sometimes have smashed and mashed books, but picture books are so worth it.  

Duck at the Door               

While I love picture books, the cost of stocking your child’s library with hardback books is prohibitive.  They make good gifts and are perfect gets from the library for children of all ages.  Sometimes you can even find hardback books as special promotions at department stores during holidays.  That’s how the Duck at the Door came to our house.  Paying five dollars for a book like this is such a treat.  I hadn’t read any of the Duck books by Jackie Urbanovic, but I was pleasantly surprised by a cute story.  The book itself is big and sturdy with bright colorful hand drawn illustrations and text in bold fonts.  Put that together with a funny story and this book is a winner.

Duck at the Door is full of furred and feathered domesticated friends along with a compassionate owner who loves all creatures.  Owner Irene already has multiple dogs, cats, and birds that enjoy all the comforts of home.  The animals cook in the kitchen, have bubble baths in the bathtub, and even vie for control over the TV remote.  The harmony of home is put to the test however when a duck named Max comes to the door.  Of course, Irene invites Max into the family home with open arms.

We like this short book because it offers such a cute glimpse at animal friendship.  The animal characters while maintaining animal-like appearances, display human-like personalities.  Plus the story itself of an animal loving owner who takes in stray pets rings so true to life.  Max the duck, Irene the owner, and all of the other animal friends are charming for sure.  They just make you smile!  Perfect for read-alouds, or read again and again and again, this book is sweet and shares a story about compassion and love and what it means to be a family.

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