CM . . . . Volume XVII Number 29 . . . . April 1, 2011
The Bellefontaine and Gürth wife/husband team who collaborated on ABC of Canada are back with another effective concept book for very young children. This time, they focus on the numbers from one through 10 and visually provide "things" for children to count. Each number is treated via a double page spread with the number's single sentence text being split over two lines. The first line of text provides the number and the name of the living or inanimate thing to be counted while the second line provides an explanation of what is being done and where. As this is a Canada counting book, the sentences' subjects are generally identifiably Canadian, things like maple leaves, polar bears, totem poles, canoes, and hockey players. As well, Gürth uses Canadian settings for his illustrations: snow-covered mountains, prairie grain fields, lakes and sea shores. While really young children likely won't be aware of the significance of the tulips blooming before the Parliament buildings found on the 10 page, they will likely recognize that most Canadian icon, the Mountie.
Gürth's boldly coloured and black-outlined illustrations are most appropriate for the very young who are just learning to count, and, with one exception, the items that are to be counted are clearly delineated. The one counting task that could be a challenge for some occurs with the number nine where fishing boats overlap and may not necessarily be perceived as two boats. The book's last pair of pages provide a form of review whereby youngsters can again count groups of objects from one to 10.
An excellent first counting book!
Dave Jenkinson, CM's editor lives and counts in Winnipeg, MB.
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other reproduction is prohibited without permission.
Copyright © the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.