Open Very Carefully -A Book With Bite! Nick Bromley and Nicola O’Byrne

Published by Nosy Crow (ISBN:  978-0857630476)

Although this starts as the story of The Ugly Duckling, it ends very differently! Watch out for the crocodile trying to escape from the book. 

This is one of those fantastic books that children can’t wait to get their hands on! Who can resist rocking the book to make the crocodile fall asleep or shaking it to make him fall out? Who can resist giggling at the sight of the crocodile dressed for ballet? The holes he eventually escapes through are also very appealing to little fingers! 

Although great fun and perfect for enthusing readers, there is much work that can be inspired by this book. The little ducking doesn’t run from his fear (the crocodile!); he comes up with solutions to his problem, asking his friends (the readers) for help. The direct appeal from the duckling works very well in engaging the reader and making that connection. It could be used as the starting point for discussions about facing your fears. The book also offers the opportunity for writing in role as the little ducking whose story was taken over by this unwanted visitor. The book leaves us wondering where the crocodile might end up next and this offers another opportunity for writing – about his further adventures. Which other stories might he turn up in- and how might it turn out?! The crocodiles taste for ‘o’s and ‘s’s could make for some spelling fun!

A beautifully illustrated and presented book. That duckling has such an expressive face!