Thursday, January 26, 2012

Book #26: Ten Little Fingers and Ten Little Toes, by Mem Fox, Illustrated by Helen Oxenbury

Image from Copper Coyote blog

This rhyming book compares 11 babies, each with 10 little fingers and 10 little toes.  The illustrations, in Oxenbury’s signature style, feature babies of all complexions and hair colors. There are babies born in the mountains, city babies, and babies who live in tents, but all the babies, regardless of nationality or skin color, have 10 little fingers and 10 little toes.

Perfect for a lap sit storytime, the illustrations show the babies laughing and playing together with close ups on fingers and toes at appropriate times. Each time you get to the fingers and toes line, help your child wiggle their fingers and toes. If you can, take off your shoes and socks, so you can wiggle your fingers and toes too.

Follow up with some fingerplays about fingers and toes, such as 5 Little Fingers, 10 Little Fingers, and My Fingers Can. I also like Did YouEver See a Baby? It’s fun because it involves lots of bouncing, which most babies love. All of these fingerplays can be done standing up or with a baby on your lap.

Image from
Read the story again, but this time talk about the different colors and patterns that the children are wearing. There are babies in pants, dresses, overalls, pajamas, etc. This type of discussion is a good way to model reading for babies. You are showing them how to look beyond the words and look for the clues in the illustrations.


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