When I was pregnant with my first son, I had the blessing of leisure time to enjoy my pregnancy and creating a nursery in a new home. I had the luxury of time to peruse all of the baby stores and spend hours and hours on Pinterest pouring over the cutest baby things. I loved reading as a child and one of our core goals as parents was to instill a deep love of reading in our children.
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From day one, I knew I would start reading to him every day – and not only at bedtime. Each day, I carried cloth books and board books around in our diaper bag for quick access to entertainment.
I found the bookshelf that I wanted for the nursery and set out to fill it with books. I thought I would check out the “Rodeo Drive” of Atlanta – Buckhead. I knew there would be cute baby shops there with exciting books. Turns out, I was about to meet my first USBORNE book. It was part of a tactile touchy-feely series called “That’s Not My…” The one I got was “That’s not my Lion.”
The pages follow a “That’s not my lion, his _____ are too _____” format. Repetition in children’s books is beneficial in so many ways. So the first page might say, “That’s not my lion, his mane is too shaggy.” And the shaggy mane would be tactile for children to explore. The next page may say “That’s not my lion, his paws are too rough.” And the paws would feel like sandpaper. I was immediately smitten. This book was so beautifully made, thought out, illustrated – you name it. They only had a few of the books in the series – and nothing else from USBORNE.
Reading with children was so important and as I learned more, it became the most important thing that I wanted to do with my son. Although it was 2008, I was aware that even of children who started off with books, 66% of fourth graders were reading below grade level! The statistics were very similar to this:
Most parents buy board books for their babies and say they hope they’ll love reading. And yet, by middle school, most kids stop reading books that aren’t assigned in school. In the USA, an alarming 66 percent of fourth graders in public school were reading below the proficiency level in 2013. (cite)
Fast forward a year or so and I realized that our local, family owned baby store also carried a couple of USBORNE books. Again. Smitten. Kitten. While talking to one of the sisters who owned the store, she told me she sold USBORNE books and that there were many more available than the ones she had at the store. So I invited her to my house and had some friends over – call me a nerd – possibly the most fun ever.
All of USBORNE’s books have the same quality that I was initially attracted to and they cover such a wide range of ages and interests…way beyond what I could have hoped for. For example, books in the “Illustrated Stories” series have a ribbon bookmark sewn right in to the binding. Many encyclopedias and other non-fiction books that constantly require updating are supplemented with online access to the latest information updates. There are activity books, puzzle books, literature – there’s absolutely nothing missing from this carefully curated selection of books.
As soon as I found out that I could order through her, I’ve ordered and ordered and never looked back. Seriously? I became a consultant to get the Consultant starter kit of books! But now, I can share them with you and that’s amazeballs!
30 years ago Peter USBORNE pioneered a new generation of books that prove that it is possible to create books that compete with the vast media that attracts children today. From activity books, to neat fiction series, to internet-linked science and history encyclopedias, USBORNE does books better. Kane Miller (partners with USBORNE) books come from all over the world to bring a different feel, culture, or just a silly story that kids everywhere can enjoy. Fantastic fiction series make Kane Miller a wonderful choice for the readers in your life.
So I’ve included USBORNE books here as one of My Favorite Things because I believe in literacy for children and more than that, I believe that all children have the capacity to fall in love with books and reading! I believe that USBORNE books are committed to putting out amazing quality books that you can feel completely safe about your children reading. So, quite simply, USBORNE books are some of my favorite things! Click on the button above to loose yourself in their beautiful selection of books!