There is nothing more exciting for a mom who loves to read than watching her child fall in love with books-- and then attempt to read them him or herself. Not all books are perfect for these emerging readers. Some are too lengthy, too wordy, or, simply put, too challenging. But then you come across a gem like Emily Gravett's Monkey and Me, and your heart overflows with joy as you watch your little one open a new world with the simple turn of a page. This is my pick for the newest Instagram bookclub, @kidlitpicks, which is highlighting favorite repeat reads this month.
The story is simple: a little girl and her stuffed monkey get downright silly as they imitate some much loved animals. They hop like kangaroos, hang upside down like bats, and swing about like monkeys. As the child's actions are depicted prior to the spreads illustrating the animals she mimics, a fun guessing game ensues as little ones attempt to figure out what animal will be featured on the next page.
Monkey and Me is one of those books I find just brilliant in its simplicity. While Pickle is too young to actually "read" this book, the unadorned story and repetitive versus are perfect for boosting his confidence as an emerging reader. Sure, he essentially has the pages memorized, but that is what I love about it. That is where the magic happens. There is something so special about watching him pull this story out of a stack of books, climb onto his bed, and ask me to sit next to him so he can read to me. The fact that he truly believes he can read it makes him radiate joy and fall in love with the book. Repetition in story is so important for this reason - it instills such confidence in children! But perhaps more importantly, in addition to boosting confidence, repetition also provides the practice kids need to enhance new reading skills by strengthening connections in the brain that help children learn.
Monkey and Me is a treasure in our house for both Pickle and Bo alike. You can never go wrong with a book by Emily Gravett. She's a gift to the world of children's literature.
Want the book? Get it here! Monkey and Me, by Emily Gravett.
Interested in checking out our other favorite Emily Gravett book? Click HERE to read our blog post on Orange Pear Apple Bear.