Two Picture Songbooks for Christmas
Jungle Bells, sung by Anika Moa, illus. Stephanie Thatcher, Scholastic NZ
If you’ve been waiting for Scholastic’s usual pre-Christmas offerings of picture songbooks with CDs, here are two of them (see also review below). This one is sung in light-hearted fashion by a popular New Zealand singer, and illustrated by a favourite artist, so it can’t go wrong. I recited the words of the song (presumably written by Scholastic staff?) to myself, and decided that Anika Moa’s version is the best way to approach this. Stephanie’s cheerful illustrations of jungle animals are full of action and colour and reward extra examination with little extras in the pictures. I can see that children’s librarians and teachers of children aged about three to five will find this book useful for activities combining looking, singing and maybe some movement.
ISBN 978 1 77543 364 4 RRP $21 Pb
Dingle Dangle Scarecrow, sung by the Topp Twins, illus. Jenny Cooper, Scholastic NZ
This is the fifth book in the popular illustrated songbook series begun by There’s a Hole in My Bucket. I have to admit I’m not familiar with the song but it certainly bounces along with lots of repetition in this version merrily sung by the Topp Twins. Jenny Cooper’s humorous illustrations are a delight – as usual. I enjoyed reading the information about the singers and the illustrators on the fold-over flap – on both this book and the one reviewed above. Who’d have guessed that Jenny Cooper had trouble drawing cows?? This book will also appeal to librarians and teachers of young children, and I imagine that given the words of the chorus about shaking hands and feet, it offers a good opportunity for children to stand and use up some energy. I’m not going to say which book is better – my advice is buy them both!
ISBN 978 1 77543 194 7 RRP $21 Pb
Reviewed by Lorraine Orman