Tilly and Tank by Jay Fleck celebrates friendship in the most unlikely pairs. This book is available on January 9, 2018 but can be preordered on Amazon.
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What I Like About This Book
A strong vocabulary is a precursor to reading. Parents who choose books with unique words (words that you don’t use in everyday conversation) help strengthen this skill so when the child begins to independently read she has a huge background of words to pull from. Tilly and Tank uses 23 words that you most likely don’t use when you talk with your child. Words like curious, detected, barrel, turret, puzzled and so much more. We call these million dollar words. Use them throughout the day to help reinforce the new word. It can take 10-15 times of word use for the new word to stick. Pick a few new words after the reading and find various ways to enrich your child’s vocabulary.
The simple, bright illustrations are easy to follow and highlight print awareness (knowing the parts of books and how to follow along the pages.) The text moves around with the pictures, so get your finger ready and follow the word trail. Not only does it highlight the print, it will also help your child connect the sounds they hear with the words on the page.
Simple narratives help pre-literate children learn to exercise their storytelling muscles. The simpler the story at a young age, the easier it is for the child to recall and retell after a few readings. Not only that, but as a parent guide your child with questions about the story that aren’t in the text. Ask what you think Tilly might be feeling when she sees the stranger from far away? Why do you think Tank responded the way he did (Good way to use a new word and help reading comprehension) In addition there are a lot of different emotions at work in the story and highlighting them and then talking about times your child might have felt the same way not only builds narrative skills, but helps the child better connect to the story and produce a positive reading experience.
Tilly and Tank isn’t just a refreshing story about friendship, it also hits many early literacy skills which will build strong future readers!
How To Use This Book
Make cards with some of the new words your child learned. Have a conversation with your child where you intentionally use the words and as you say them, put the card in front of your child to connect the sounds with the words.
Have your child retell the story and write it down in one line sentences and draw a picture to go along with the sentence. Cut the pictures and sentences from each other and practice reordering the story using the words and pictures.
Play a matching game! Take pictures of your child making different emotion faces. Happy, Sad, Angry, Excited etc. Print them out in duplicate and play a matching game.
Other Books to Read
Tilly and Tank not only explores relationships, but how to handle new situations or times when we feel uncertain about the people we meet. These books are great to follow up to the themes of Tilly and Tank.
What books do you read to help your child understand emotions? Post in comments to share suggestions.