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My son is a huge fan of Thomas and Friends, so when he saw this book he had to have it. I wasn't going to argue as after having a look at it, I thought it would help him concentrate on learning his numbers. I bought this for my son, back when he was only 2, he's now 3 and I have just finished reading through it with him again.
The book's rrp is £7.99, but I picked it up in a discounted book store for only £2.99.
It is slightly larger than A4 in size, and is a board book. The book is sturdy and durable, and has so far lasted my son nearly 2 years, with hardly any sign of usage. It has that wipe clean feel to it, and a quick once over with a baby wipe can remove any sticky handprints.
The front cover of the book is bright and colourful with a large picture of Thomas underneath the numbers 1 2 and 3. The book states at the bottom of the cover 'Learn to count with Thomas'. I would say the book is aimed at very young children as it only goes to 10, its good as an introduction to counting.
When you first open the book, over the first 2 pages, there are 10 blocks of colour, 5 on each side. Inside each block of colour, there is a picture of a train, the trains number and the train's name. For example there is a picture of thomas, a large number 1, then the name Thomas, and so forth until you get to Douglas who is number 10.
The next page is all about Thomas, there is a large picture of Thomas in the centre of the page, with a short statment underneath, in this case there is a number '1' then the words 'one kite in the sky'. At the top of the page there is a small picture of Thomas that matches the picture from the first two pages and the statement 'thomas is number 1'. The number is big and clear and bright yellow in colour. The background of the page is the same colour as the colour block for Thomas featured in the first two pages. There is also a fairly small thomas in the bottom left corner of the page.
Each page follows the same layout until we get to number 10. With each page and the next number, the small thomas in the bottom left hand corner gains a new coach. There are semi circle type arrows that go from one coach to the next, which you can run your or your childs finger along teaching them how to count. For example Gordon is number for so on gordan's page there is a thomas followed by 3 coaches, thomas has a number one on him, followed by a coach with the number 2, and coach with a number 3 and a coach with a number 4.
In each picture there is another chance to teach counting. Each picture has a statement underneath, for example for underneath Percy's picture it says ' six ducks splashing around', in Percy's picture there are six ducks to find and count.
Over the last two pages there is a look, find and count game. There is a large picture, and to the side of it a list of things to find in it. Also underneath there is a larger version of the thomas and coaches that featured on all the other pages, now with the numbers (in words) written underneath.
The trains featured are, Thomas, Edward, Henry, Gordon, James, Percy, Toby, Duck, Donald and Douglas.
I found this a great little book. I found my son paid more attention to it, and took more in because he was intrested in the characters featured. Each page is bright colourful, bold and engaging. The numbers written are large and colourful, so they stand out on the page. There isn't too much going on in the pictures to distract from the counting. I began by just reading it to my son, but he quickly wanted to join in. The look and find at the end of the book provides a fun learning activity to do together. I have also started using the first 2 pages of the book to try and teach my son how to read the engines names, as they are written in bold large letters. I think he is starting to get it. The only problem I have is that it only goes up to 10. Also if your child has only seen the new version of Thomas, they may not recognize engines such as Duck, Donald or Douglas as they don't seem to feature in the new episodes.