Posts tagged: DK Publishing

Old Mac Donald Had a Farm (DK Publishing)

By , September 26, 2007 9:47 pm

This is such a cute book! DK books always have wonderful photographs and this one is no exception.

The text is basically a recitation of the children’s song “Old Mac Donald Had a Farm.” The adorable photos are what really make the book so enchanting. Each image features a farm scene composed of cute little felt toys.

My 20 month-old loves this book. She likes pointing to the animals and telling me what noise they make. This is a large-format board book so it is quite sturdy. An important (but often overlooked) plus for a book geared towards babies.

A Really Useful Art Book

By , August 30, 2007 11:11 am

Yes, I have stumbled upon yet another art book full of really great art activity ideas that I will never have time to do with my children. Big sigh.

The Usborne Book of Art Ideas is a cute miniature (5″x7″) hardcover book packed with neat projects that are very handily arranged by medium (watercolor paints, inks, and chalk pastels for example). The photographs are bright and very appealing (very much like those in the DK Publishing books if you are familiar with those).

Here are some photos of the inside:

This book seemed like an Amazon bargain to me at only $7.95 for a hardcover with tons of ideas (over 200, the cover claims). Plus it is eligible for Amazon’s 4-for-3 Promotion.

The ideas are very original and doable with things that most families have on hand. A few that struck me as interesting are:

– Glue pictures (creating a raised pattern or drawing using Elmer’s-type white glue)

– Blow paintings (using a straw to blow paint around on paper to create spiky shapes)

– Pulled cardboard prints (using thick cardboard to spread paint on paper)

– Cracked wax effect (creating a crackle appearance using crayons and paint)

There are also tips for working with each different medium as well as technical hints such as painting perspective, painting skies, etc.

This book is also full of useful odd bits of information. Did you know that “If you sprinkle salt onto watercolor paint, the salt soaks up the color, and leaves a grainy effect when it dries” (p.58). This makes sense now that I think about it, but it never would have occurred to me before I read this.

I would try out these ideas with my 5 and 7 year-old, but for the under-4 set, many of them might be too complex or messy. Imagine a 3 year-old blowing paint, the image is not a pretty one! A few of the ideas might be easily adapted to younger children though, so if you are interested, check it out of the library and take a look.

There is also an interesting-sounding large Usborne book called The Usborne Complete Book of Art Ideas. According to an Amazon reviewer, it is apparently a compilation of this little book, plus two other Usborne titles: The Usborne Book of Art Skills and The Usborne Book of Art Projects (Art Ideas). This might be a good one to look at too if you think you might also buy the other books in the series.

The Usborne Book of Art Ideas inspires me to drop my laundry basket and sit down to do some art. In fact, I think I shall!

Also take a look at these:

My Big Book Of Everything (Roger Priddy, DK Publishing)

By , April 1, 2007 3:24 pm

I discovered this book at Chinaberry about five years ago, when my oldest daughter was one. She LOVED it, then my son LOVED it, in fact this book was starting to be loved to pieces.

Just as my youngest daughter is getting to the age where books are of interest, I was fortunate enough recently to find a brand new hardcover copy of it in our grocery store bargain book bin for about $5.00! I snapped it up and now we have a nice new copy for the baby.

Like all DK books, the photos are simple and colorful. This book is arranged into 33 chapters such as “Around The Home,” “Clothes,” “Noises,” “Me And My Body.” Each chapter consists of one or two pages of many fascinating photos related to that topic, each with a one word caption.

The pictures in this book promise hours of investigation and learning opportunities for many ages. Little ones like looking at the pictures while being told what it is. Older children might try to read the accompanying word.

I am looking forward to watching a third child thoroughly enjoy every picture in this book!

Baby Faces (DK Publishing)

By , March 1, 2007 2:46 pm

Babies love faces and my babies have all loved this simple board book.

Each of the 16 pages has a different baby with a different expression. Underneath the full-page photo is a one word caption describing the baby (“happy,” “sad,” “laughing,” etc.).

Hint: Toddlers think it is the height of hilarity if Mom or Dad imitates the babies’ expressions while reading aloud (just don’t let anyone else see you!).

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