Something Old is New Again
Jonas Sickler brings new life to traditional nursery rhymes. By varying locations, he gives the stories an international appeal. And, in the process, makes them more inclusive. In Old MacDonald Indestructibles , readers visit a farm in Bolivia. Most of the creatures there are traditional domestic farm animals. But not all. You’ll find a purple rabbit on every page. And birds of prey. An eagle soars overhead. While a vulture views the farm from a rooftop or sitting on a horse or a sheep. Old MacDonald Indestructibles invites endless exploration. That’s because babies can repeatedly grasp, crumple, and bend pages without ripping or tearing. And safely mouth and chew. You know how babies are. They put everything they get their hands on into their mouths. More than rip proof and chew proof, these unique books are also washable.
The Value of Reading to Babies
If you can’t recall the original rhyme. Not a problem. The classic nursery rhyme appears, for reference, on the back cover. Refresh your memory. Or, better yet, take clues from the pictures and tell your own tale. The picture only format encourages story-telling. Bright colors and well-defined pictures encourage natural conversation between parent and baby. Likely you’ve been to a farm and can share memories with your little one. What likely begins as a monologue gradually evolves into dialogues. Granted, in the beginning conversations with babies are one speaker, one listener. Talk on nonetheless. Think about how important that is in creating emotional ties. The sound of your voice is one way the baby recognizes you. In that way, reading together reenforces attachments. That’s reason enough to read to a baby.
Traditional nursery rhymes are treasures. They not only delight little ones. They also build memories. As well as serve as conversation starters. If you’ve ever been around pigs, point out the pigs and share a story about that experience. Were you on a farm or at a county fair? Wherever you were, likely none of the pigs was purple or blue. Certainly none was wearing a straw hat or a knitted scarf. Embrace the silly. Wee ones appreciate folks who do. Asking questions and sharing ideas enrich the storytelling experience. Then as young children gain language skills, monologues become conversations. While looking at pictures together, they learn words to describe what’s on the page. Thereby building a vocabulary that gradually gives children the tools they need to create their own stories.