Dear Zoo by Rod Campbell Format: Board Book Publisher: Little Simon (Imprint of Simon & Schuster) Source: Library ISBN: 9781416947370 Find this book at your local library
The narrator writes a letter to the zoo to ask for a pet, but what they send back isn’t at all what he expects.
Hey, I made a rhyme! This book is an incredibly cute read that covers not only various zoo animals, but also different concepts like size and shape. It is a lift-the-flap book, so children can explore what’s behind each box and try to guess the animal based on the descriptor below the image. What I like about this book is that the child writing to the zoo can also be the reader. It’s a great way to engage with small children and ask them what type of animal they would ask for if they could write to the zoo. The simple illustrations that follow a rainbow color scheme combined with a simple, rhythmic, first person text with the refrain of “So they sent me…” also makes this a great book for children to begin reading on their own. The only negative is that all the animals in the books are male. I would recommend one of the Sandra Boynton books an as alternative, as she is really good about having gender diversity in her books among the animals.