When asked to review some musical books my immediate reaction was yes please! My 4&3/4 year old daughter loves nothing more than singing and dancing so I was most intrigued to see what she would make of these.
What are they?
We received two books, both written by Carrie and David Grant. The ‘Lions speedy sauce’, which would teach us all about loud and soft and ‘Elephants Birthday Bells’, which would teach us all about rhythm. Both come with their own CD..
What were they like?
Well the first book Mary chose to read and listen to was Elephant’s Birthday Bells, she was very excited!
We put the CD on and turned to the first page…..
It’s a very simple story about an elephant that makes too much noise so they try and teach her to be quieter! The narration is clear and easy to understand, my only criticism was that the noise that tells you to turn the page is very quick and you have to be pretty fast at turning the pages to get to the next page before that page is over!
I did think Mary would struggle with this, however she soon worked out getting the pages ready and was happily reading the book alongside the CD in no time.
At the end of the story there is a song about Ella the elephant, which Mary loves to sing and dance along to. You also get to come back to this again at the end to do the karaoke version!
The next track is a learning track; it talks the child through loud and soft sounds, counting and tapping out various rhythms using loud and soft noises.
Mary really enjoys joining in with this bit.
The book then moves on to teach a little bit about singing in harmony and scales. It’s very basic, but perfect for the little beginner to join in with and understand.
The last section shows you how to make your own set of jingle-jangle bells. We have yet to try this, but it looks fairly simple and I’m sure any child would enjoy this activity.
The second book, Lions Speedy Sauce follows the same pattern, the story, a song, followed by a section all about clapping to the beat. This is a fun section which Mary again really enjoys. This is followed by a section about scales and lastly a make your own banging bongos page!
What did we think? 8/10
Mary loved these books, we’ve only had them for just over a week, so long term I can’t say whether she’ll get bored, but short term she has had a lot of fun with them and has put them on many times.
She is getting the idea of the rhythms and loud and softs, so I’d say they have done a good job of teaching her a basic introduction to music. Taking everything into account, we decided to give them 8/10 and would recommend them to friends or be happy to buy them as gifts.