Parent educators with the Washington School District have chosen a tall tale about a giraffe as their May Baby Buzz Pick. “Oh Dear, Geoffrey!” by Gemma O’Neil is sure to delight the younger set.
Each month the group selects a noteworthy book for children birth to age five. A review of the Baby Buzz Pick runs in the second weekend issue of The Missourian. Parent educators then purchase copies of the books to use in their visits with parents and children. An ongoing list of Baby Buzz Picks can be found on emissourian.com.
The following review was written by Nancy Nagel, area literacy advocate.
“Geoffrey the Giraffe does it all wrong as he tries to make friends in the animal kingdom. He bends down low and scares the meerkats, stumbles into the herd of elephants, and makes an unwanted splash at the watering hole.
“Geoffrey is fed up with being so tall and clumsy. But he soon learns his height is a great way to make friends. Cheeky monkeys climb his legs and up his long neck to get to the top of the tree. The tiny bright blue birds love having a friend at their height, ‘Nobody else can reach up here where we live. We’d love to be your friends.’
“Brightly colored mixed media pictures help tell the story. Earthy greens and browns depict a realistic landscape. The brilliant blue of the birds is a joy to look at.
“Toddlers will enjoy making the silly sounds that abound in this book . . . ‘bendy-buckly and bumbles and bumps!’ Older children will relish the rhyming sets of words like ‘so he often tangles, trips, skips, and flips.’ They’ll also get a kick out of the use of alliteration — the use of words beginning with the same sound — which produce some tongue twisting passages, ‘soon trunks are tangled and tails are tugged.’
“This book would be useful in starting a discussion with your child about how to make friends. Encourage them, as Geoffrey does, to just be themselves. Friends are all around us. We just have to look for them.”
Other parent educator favorites this month are “Sleepyheads” by Sandra Howatt, “Picnic” by John Burningham, “Hooray for Hat!” by Brian Won, “Sophie Sleeps Over” by Marisabina Russo, and “The Troublemaker” by Lauren Castillo.