Gloriously effective pre-school learning tool...
The Start School series with Topsy and Tim is an innovative concept in education aids for the home. Aimed squarely at pre-schoolers, although it certainly holds an appeal for both older and younger children, the purpose of Topsy and Tim First Writing is to introduce the skill of handwriting to youngsters; starting with the basics of the alphabet.
The slim book is brightly coloured with an unobtrusive font that is both extremely easy on the eye, but is simple enough not to confuse. Whilst the fundamental idea is to encourage your child to learn the alphabet as well as how to write it; it also engages the reader (and parent) beyond the mere parroting of letters using associative images to stimulate parent-child interaction. The best feature by far is the ‘wipe-clean-ability’ of the pages (they also feel wonderfully smooth and silky to touch) and the chunky pen included with the book. We didn’t notice initially, but the pen lid also boasts a rather nifty soft eraser – no more rummaging around for a spare tissue – hurrah! Clearly a lot of thought and understanding has gone into the design of the pen: it’s substantial enough for small hands to grab hold of without being too big; the lid fits snugly and securely reducing the possibility of small fingers uncapping it and writing all over your floors, walls and furniture, which is an essential feature as you need to avoid contact with fabrics, books, etc. Replacing the pen should be relatively easy, although I’d be tempted to find one that the special cap can fit onto.
There simply is nothing to fault in this book and we could rave on for hours about how much we love this new series; it is bright, airy, refreshingly simple to use and makes the ‘chore’ of helping your little one learn to read and write fun! Topsy and Tim First Writing is a gem that will make you wonder how you ever managed without the convenience, ease of use and environmentally friendliness of such a wonderfully re-usable book. A modern essential for parents keen to aid their child’s learning, without the guilty conscience of wasting a tree-load of paper.
We interview C J Daugherty about Night School
- 10 January 2012