Book reviews and information on dinosaur books by Everything Dinosaur team members.
Mum Inspired to Write Dinosaur Story Books
Nicole Mills has a background in publishing, so when she took an interest in her son’s dinosaur obsession, photographing him with his various prehistoric animal models and toys, her mind began to wonder how she could help other children share his fascination for these long extinct creatures. Mum and son’s imaginations were certainly sparked, whilst Henry made up stories about his dinosaurs, Nicole decided to turn these into a series of dinosaur themed story books, aimed at young readers.
Nicole Mills and Son Henry
Picture Credit: Lavide (Phoenix)
Ideas can come from all kinds of places, you never quite know when inspiration will strike. When Henry told his mum that he needed a detective to solve a dinosaur mystery, the idea of publishing a series of dinosaur detective story books was born.
“Dinosaur Detective: Thomas T. rex and the Case of the Angry Ankylosaurus”, is the first title, in which detective “Thomas the T. rex” attempts to solve the riddle of some disappearing ferns by following a set of clues including some dinosaur footprints. The press release provided with the inspection copy that was sent to Everything Dinosaur, states that children will be exposed to valuable life skills such as problem solving and the power of emotions, whilst the humour within the simple text will keep adult readers entertained.
Studies have shown that if parents enjoy reading and have a house filled with lots of books, then their children are more likely to become avid readers too. Immersing children in literacy activities at an early age can help them gain confidence with their own reading and writing. Exposure to books, with parents taking time to read to their offspring will help the child develop a bigger vocabulary and assist with spelling. The large font and the adoption of a simple rhyming motif make the words in this story book very accessible for young children, although parents and guardians on this side of the Atlantic might struggle with the American spelling, “armor” and “favorite” being cases in point.
Creative, Imaginative Play can Help Children Prepare for Formal Education
Picture Credit: Schleich
“Dinosaur Detective: Thomas T. rex and the Case of the Angry Ankylosaurus” is the debut book in this series, the author hopes to publish one book for each letter of the alphabet, after all, enough dinosaurs have been named and described to easily fill an alphabetical list. The tone and text of this book accommodates aspects of the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS), elements of the English national curriculum. For example, within the statutory framework of the English national curriculum, literacy is a priority, with children being encouraged to link sounds and letters and to commence reading and writing independently. The framework stipulates that children should be given access to a wide range of reading materials including poems to help ignite their interest.
Actual Dinosaur Models Feature in the Stories
Observant children will be able to recognise several of their dinosaur and prehistoric animal toys within the book. For example, illustrations of the eponymous hero “Thomas the T. rex” suggests to us that the Papo brown standing T. rex dinosaur figure plays the detective role in Henry’s imaginative tales. Using familiar models will help young readers to buy into the story, they can even recreate some of the story lines themselves (as well as inventing a few new ones).
The Papo Standing Tyrannosaurus rex Model (Brown)
Picture Credit: Everything Dinosaur
Available from Archway Publishing Online Bookstore: “Dinosaur Detective – Thomas T. rex and the Case of the Angry Ankylosaurus”
ISBN: 978-1-4808-3766-9 (soft cover) or hardback version 978-1-4808-3767-6 and in addition, a downloadable E-book is available.
Author, Nicole commented:
“It’s important for children and parents to read, play and discover together, so what better way to do it than with dinosaurs? Through Henry’s obsession with dinosaurs, he has not only learned an encyclopaedic wealth of information, but I have too.”
We wish mum and son the very best of luck and we hope that “Thomas the T.rex” is able to crack all his cases.