Ooh! Aah! Welcome to our newest fun discovery.
The blurb on the back should have been warning enough: ‘This is no ordinary book’ and ‘A laugh-out-loud interactive picture book’ gives an indication of what is in store but perhaps not the volume. My ears are still ringing.
Today’s post is dedicated to I Say Ooh You Say Aah by John Kane, published by Templar Books. It has a bright, attention-grabbing cover – light blue, big lettering and … a small donkey wearing underpants on its head. So far, so suitable for young readers.
And then the chaos begins. Rather stupidly, I hadn’t read the book before presenting it to Year 2 this morning so I was learning along with them. And I am not ashamed to admit that my middle-aged brain struggled to retain the instructions within – luckily the children were on the ball. Because this book is like no other I have read before and, to be honest, I don’t think I’ve seen the children so hyped either.
The premise is simple, as the reader I tell the children that when I say ‘ooh’ they have to say ‘aah’. It worked. Excellent … except it was rather deafening and the book told me to keep asking them to say it louder. The first time was pretty raucous but, by the third time, I think the Year 6 pupils in London today could have heard them.
Then, whenever they saw the colour red, they had to pat their heads. This was then mashed up with a red page of oohs … and chaos and giggles ensued. THEN, when they saw an ant, they had to yell ‘underpants’ which is, naturally, a favourite word with children (how rude). This joke continued, with an array of visual gags centred around donkeys wearing underpants (or not) and children shouting their own names when they saw a cloud. Their focus became even more essential as the book and its jokes progressed, so at one point I think I had them all patting their heads, shouting their names and declaring ‘underpants’ in the loudest of voices.
It was chaos, as I think I’ve said before. But of the best type. They LOVED it. And the Reception children adored it too, ‘aahing’ and ‘underpants’ing all the way down the corridors. This will be on permanent loan from now on and I can see why, although it works best as an oral reading and as a group – on your own you might feel a little silly yelling underpants. Or maybe not? Maybe that’s your thing.
Great fun, great pictures, great colours.
I’m off for a lie down now. Oooooh.