for just ONE DAY
Laura Leuck (author) & Marc Boutavant (illustrator)
(Tate Publishing)
Alll children let their imagination run wild every once in a while and wonder what it would be like to be a buzzing bee, or a monkey, or a grizzly bear. This is exactly what this book illustrates with some fantastic rhyming text and some fabulous art work, and each page encourages children to use their imagination. The book is cleverly set up; rather than have one double-spread for each animal, each right-hand page announces the animal and you need to turn the page to see what it would be like to be that specific animal, allowing the child to make their own mind first as to what might be on the page:

There are some clever links between each of the pages: for example here the little boy’s hat and the frog, the birds hiding behind the lampost and the birds hiding behind a tree, the little black and white dog, the fact that the little boy is standing in a street called Nile Street… There is plenty to spot, as is always the case with Marc Boutavant’s illustrations, and what great fun it is.
At the same time the illustrations give an extra edge to the text: being teased, being different, feeling scared … all these emotions are portrayed beautifully.
But at the end, the message is clear: although it might be fun to be someone else just for a bit and escape life’s worries, in the end, the best person you can be is yourself (and there is a great little mirror to emphasise just that!).

A lovely book to read out-aloud which can be understood on many levels. I think for example that it would be really useful within a primary school setting to talk about self-confidence.