Sunday, December 4, 2016

Review: Bumba Books, I See Ocean Animals by Tessa Kenan



Bumba Books is a newer brand from Lerner, offering nonfiction titles for the younger (PreK-1st) set that goes a bit beyond what we have been seeing. I think my love for Lerner's overall quality has been well established, and that is still here - the binding that stands up to library usage, bright photos, accessible fonts. Even at this level, the books contain a table of contents and index. In fact, I used a stack of them recently to teach younger kids about parts of a nonfiction book, and they mostly weren't listening to me because they were so excited to look at the books and trade them back and forth 😊

In Bumba Books, the glossary is a photo glossary, well suited to the younger readership. Another addition I like is the age-appropriate question bubbles: "How could having a small size be helpful?", or "Why might hunting in a group be better than hunting alone?" For parents beginning to share books with their children and not sure how to go about it, these are a nice way to prompt discussion. 

And, of course, you can't go wrong with the subject matter! Clown fish photos still elicit shouts of "Nemo!!", and who doesn't love a smiling dolphin or a toothy shark? Other animals in this series include the aforementioned sharks, as well as rays, jellyfish and starfish. Additional series currently include Community Helpers, Holidays, Machines That Go, Sports, Seasons and Pets (look for reviews of some of those next month!) If you are looking to bulk up your beginning readers, or address STEM needs in your classroom library, these sets are a pretty safe bet!

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