Beep Beep Beep Time for Sleep by Claire Freedman and Richard Smythe
|Beep Beep Beep Time for Sleep by Claire Freedman and Richard Smythe
|Category: For Sharing
|Reviewer: Sam Tyler
|Summary: Shift time is over on the construction site and all the machines must go to bed. Help them out in this visually pleasant book that has a strange idea about machines needing to go to sleep.
|Date: February 2016
|Publisher: Simon & Schuster Children's UK
|External links: Author's website
Bedtime books are a great way of winding a toddler down before they go to sleep, but haven't they all been done before? Coming up with something a little different that encourages a child to nod off is not always easy and new ideas can be a little bizarre when you think about it. Do bulldozers really need to doze off at the end of the night? At least we will have fun listening to all the machinery as it goes off to bed.
At the end of a long shift on a building site the men and women need to go home, but what do you do with all the machinery. Time to shut everything down and park up the lorries, because according to Claire Freedman, even industrial plant needs to sleep.
Books about construction are very popular for a certain type of toddler; the idea of massive colourful vehicles that can lift tons of material must almost seem magical for one so small. Traditionally these Tonka style books are aimed at little boys, but there is nothing stopping Beep Beep Beep Time for Sleep being universal, because all children need to wind down when the night draws in.
Rather than jump in immediately to falling asleep, Freedman has a little fun with the construction site itself. We are introduced to several different pieces of kit that all have their own special sounds – brumm, brumm, or beep, beep. The book is a series of nice rhyming couplets that are easy to follow for a child and have that noise element that they will love to impersonate. You also have the bright and colourful imagery from Richard Smythe. This is a little on the simple side, but the bold design does make the images eye catching for a youngster.
After introducing us to our machinery mates, Freedman starts to bring the pace down by having the vehicles become parked up to go to sleep. This is a good way of bringing your child down too as they will see the pace is slowing. The issue is that the machines themselves are not given human characteristics. These are not sentient diggers being locked up for the night, but normal machines. Linking falling asleep to turning off an engine is somewhat of a stretch. Even putting a pair of eyes of the machines would have made the book make more sense. The bulldozer is not going to bed at all, just being turned off.
Thankfully at 18 months to 3 years, most children won't question the fact that a machine is just a machine, so the book does work. However, a slightly older and more precocious child may be a little fazed about the difference between sleep and simply being turned off. For the machine mad child, Beep, Beep, Beep is great fun, just for the imagery alone, but for those children who are indifferent to the pleasures of giant yellow trucks, the book may prove a little confusing.
A book that explores construction without trying to make machines sleep is the fun Construction by Sally Sutton and Brian Lovelock, whilst there are loads of books with machines at the centre, including Jack's Mega Machines: The Dinosaur Digger by Alison Ritchie and Mike Byrne.
You can read more book reviews or buy Beep Beep Beep Time for Sleep by Claire Freedman and Richard Smythe at Amazon.co.uk Amazon currently charges £2.99 for standard delivery for orders under £20, over which delivery is free.
You can read more book reviews or buy Beep Beep Beep Time for Sleep by Claire Freedman and Richard Smythe at Amazon.com.
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