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This picture book leads children through a world of words and images. A space visitor travels round the wonders of planet Earth and finally arrives in a playground where he encounters Earth's children. Along the way, the space visitor picks out objects from every area and learns their names. From "submarine" to "satellite dish", around 300 objects are listed along the top of every page. Subjects covered are: space; ocean; mountains; desert; animals; market; food; buildings; farm; transport; and dinosaurs. A special thumb index helps children to discover the different themes.
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Wildsmith (Saint Francis, 1995) enters the picture-search market long dominated by Waldo and the I Spy series. The premise is that a visiting alien, clad rather like a court jester and traveling in an extravagant Jules Verne fantasy of a spaceship, is landing on Earth and encountering for the first time its objects and creatures. Ten to twenty labeled objects and animals are illustrated around the margins of gloriously colored pen-and-ink drawings; every spread represents a different environment (space, ocean, town, market, dinosaur museum, playground, etc.), and all invite viewers to locate the border objects within the pictures. As usual with Wildsmith's work, the animals and birds are superb, but there are also some extraordinary renderings of buildings and machines, many recycled from his Give a Dog a Bone (1985, o.p.). For a younger group than the Martin Handford and Jean Marzollo/Walter Wick collaborations, this book is fully accessible to pre-readers. Opportunities abound for all sorts of recognition, from colors and shapes to bird species, types of musical instruments, and forms of transport, both modern and antique. Drawbacks: There's an index for which any use is difficult to imagine, and the tab cuts on the pages will become quickly dog- eared. (Picture book. 3-7) -- Copyright ©1996, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.From School Library Journal:
Kindergarten-Grade 4. A friendly traveler from outer space visits Earth and meets many children who teach him how to play. As he travels all over the planet in a spaceship, he learns many words in the process. The "I Spy" format features detailed double-page spreads devoted to such environments as a desert, jungle, market, wildlife park, playground, and farm. Small labeled drawings of objects that can be found on that page appear around each spread. An index directs readers to the locale in which each word can be traced. When the alien leaves the Earth, he trails a flag with the word "goodbye" printed in over 30 languages. The colorful, intricate drawings will keep browsers occupied for hours. An intriguing vocabulary builder.?Eunice Weech, M. L. King Elementary School, Urbana, IL
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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