Reviewed by Sallie Greenhalgh
When my daughter first saw this board book she was very excited. It is very colourful and she liked the sparkly ‘yellow brick road’ which leads you all the way through the book (she is a fan of the Wizard of Oz so really got the idea of following the road). Unlike many similar books there is a significant amount of text on each page so although she is 4 and at the upper end of the age range that this book is aimed at there was still plenty to keep her interest.
The book is taking you on a journey to the park all the way from leaving home to actually being able to play at the park. Being able to have a go a tying your shoelaces is a lovely way to start the book and again gave my daughter something to have a go at which she can’t already do. There is an interactive element to each page of the book which makes it accessible to children of many ages. I think my daughter would have enjoyed this book from about the age of 1 onwards and I would suggest an upper limit of around 4 to 5 years although nothing is specified by the publisher.
We were able to use the book as a basis for discussion about road safety as one of the pages talks about how to cross a road. The opportunity for other important conversations also arose on subsequent readings.
The book has been ‘developed in consultation with children, families and organisations working with blind and partially sighted children’. This is evident as the book has bold colours throughout and a good variety of ‘touch and feel’ sections. The book uses a good variety of vocabulary which is particularly good for a young child who is constantly trying to gain new language.
The book is well made and sturdy and I think will outlast my book crazy daughter. We gave this book 5 out of 5 and it will be in regular use for a long time here!
Off to the Park is available to buy from Child’s Play here.