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My 3 year old son loved this book since he loves anything with wheels. I don't think that the book teaches very good fire safety. When the firemen arrive, they start to determine where the fire is located in the house. While they are doing that, the father, mother & children are removing furniture & other belongings from the house. (This is a big no-no!) The family is so concerned with the furniture that they don't even realize that one of their children & their cat is trapped upstairs. After the fire has been put out, Fireman Small says "The fire is over! Move right back in again!" The family carry their sofa, lamps, tables , and chairs into the house. (The house looks perfectly fine. No fire, water or smoke damage.) I know this is just a kid's book, but I feel children should know that a fire is a big deal and that if you have a house fire, it will not be fixed with the snap of a finger!
A book and a toy in one.
My little boy of 18 months received this book for Easter and we've really been enjoying playing with it.
The book is about a little red fire engine and what he does day to day. For example, he checks his equipment in the morning, goes out on a fire call with his lights and sirens blazing, puts out the fire with his water hose and then rescues a cat stuck up in a tree all in one day.
This is a cute little story and perfect for little boys who love their fire engines. The pictures are bright and colourful and the engine has a big smiley face so he has a fun personality as he is telling you all about his day.
The text is written in black and is quite bold so it's very easy to read and its short enough to catch their imagination and have them listen to the story without getting bored and just wanting to turn to the next page.
The book is hardbound and has really thick chunky pages so it stands up well to heavy page turners or those small children who like to put books in their mouths.
However the best part about this book in my opinion is the little plastic wind up engine that comes with this book. It's fairly small but has a little winding mechanism on the side which allows you to wind him up. This is actually quite easy for my three year old girl to wind up which is good as she likes to do it for her brother. The , on the back page of the book there is a section that folds out to reveal a large track on which you can then place the fire engine and watch him drive round. There is a groove cut out in the page so the engine follows this track and stays on it really well. The track is curvy and goes all the way around the out turned pages. You need to be careful at the fold line though as sometimes the engine will get stuck here but a quick push will get him going again. My little girl and boy love it and love to watch the engine go round. I would probably say that a full wind up of power allows the engine to go one and a half times round the track. Along the way there are cars to pass and more text telling you what the engine has done that day. It's such a clever idea for a little book and really brings the story to life in my opinion.
The book is from Igloo books, ISBN 978-1-84852-805-5 and costs £9.99.
The little fire engine board book isn't really the bed time sort of book that you read to restore calm in the household but it a lovely fun book that allows you to interact with your child and allows them to explore alone too. Little fire engine is part of a series of books by igloo. We first experienced them with Little Tractor which my son's enjoyed to a great extent and fought over that much we had to get another one so they could play alone so the fire engine it was!
The book is a reasonable size folded up and because it is made of extra thick board it is quite thick. The book opens up with a folded board track on the right hand side and small board book story on the left hand side. On the top left hand side of the book is small area were the fire engine sits and a plastic holder goes over the top to keep it in place. The track when opened out measures roughly 22cms squared and the track is grooved into the board so the fire engine can be wound up and let go. The track is as you would expect quite basic with it mainly running around the outside of the map with two little loops to make it a bit more interesting. It is nicely decorated with the majority of it green grass with some buildings, cars and trains within the picture too. There are also a four sentences written on each four areas about what the fire engine might do at that point. The fire engine it's self is quite small but a good enough size for small hands to hold.
Moving onto the story side it is covered over seven pages of beautifully bright, large bold pictures. The story itself is very simple and would appeal to a young age group who find the prospect of sitting a listening to a story difficult. The story basically tells you about Little fire engine who goes out on a mission, using his sirens he gets through the traffic to put the fire out and on the way home rescues a cat from a tree. The colours of the pictures are lovely and bright and the fire engine is made to look very friendly and like an actually living thing with a big smile even the cars have eyes and smile too.
My eldest son being five has pretty much grown out of this book but from time to time I do catch him playing with the fire engine on the track but it doesn't keep his attention too long. My three year old on the other hand still enjoys sitting down with me on the floor and playing with it. After reading the story a couple of times to my boys I became bored of it so I tend to make new adventures up for little fire engine whilst my son whizzes him round the track to attend to the fires. I do really enjoy using this book with my son and I find it encourages his imagination which I think is a really important skill for children to learn. My son plays with the book alone from time to time too but I have to be careful he folds the track part up correctly as even though it is quite thick board it could still break. The fire engine is great to whizz round the track it does need a bit of encouragement round the corners on the track but don't most toys like this. Winding the fire engine up was a little tricky for my youngest to begin with but he soon got the hang of it.
The Little fire engine book and the others in the series are widely available and at a great price too. They retail at £9.99 but I have seen them it a lot of places for £5 or less. Amazon currently has it on sale for £4.99. This book would make an ideal present for a young child but just remember this is more of an interactive book than a bedtime story book.