By Karen from Portlaoise Library
“What do you call a blind dinosaur?”
What do you call a blind dinosaur’s dog?
A Do-you-think-he-saurus Rex.
If you’re of a certain generation then you will know these immortal lines from the classic dino flim, “Jurassic Park” released into the public in 1993. (Yes that’s 28 years and counting, the dinosaurs aren’t the only fossils!)
My love of all things dino had begun many years before Spielberg’s creations and so when it comes to storytimes, I admit, I will always be a bit biased towards a dinosaur themed book.
The first on my terrifyingly toothsome list is about my favourite dinosaur of all – Tyrannosaurus Rex.
Penelope Rex is so excited about starting school but is amazed to discover her classmates are all….children! What follows is a hilarious, toothsome tale as Penelope learns that chomping on her classmates may not be the best way to make friends! She also learns a valuable lesson when the tables are turned and she is on the receiving end of a “chomp” in Ryan T Higgin’s fantastic tale, “We don’t eat our Classmates”.
The second book on our must read list is the first in a cracking (sorry about the pun but it is eggscellent!) series full of beautiful illustrations and adorable characters named Nancy and Martin and Wilf and Boo to just name a few.
The first book celebrates the arrival of Gregosaurus who is feeling a little bit sad as all his little dinosaur buddies are having fun without him. Will Greg find out what his dino pals have been up to?
Dinosaur Juniors “Happy Hatchday “by Rob Biddulph is a beautiful, colourful book that your little dino fans will adore!
Next on our list is the fabulous Julia Donaldson and her “Tyrannosaurs Drip”. Mr and Mrs Tyrannosaurs Rex have 3 hatchlings but the last little hatchling just doesn’t act like a Tyrannosaurs Rex should! He’s small, he’s drippy and he’s a…vegetarian!!!But this clever little dinosaur soon finds a way to save all his “drippy” friends from the terrifying tyrannosaur family. Enjoy this wonderful tale of a small, brave and very clever hero with your own hatchlings!
Another grrreat dinosaur series is the “How Do Dinosaurs” books from Jane Yolen and Mark teague. Their fantastically real illustrations query what dinosaurs would do at bedtime, going to school, play with their friends, eat their food and say I love you to name but a few of the real world scenarios these dinos find themselves in and allow children to see that their own world is not so diferent from their dino pals.
If you’re little one would love the idea of having their own dinosaurian pet, then look no further than “The Dinosaur Department Store” by Richard Merritt and Lily Murray, where a little girl embarks upon an adventure to find the perfect dinosaur pet. Will she choose a bone crunching Tyrannosaurs Rex, a stomping sauropod or a pair of loved up Ankylosauruses? With colourful illustrations and a feisty lead character, this is one your feisty little readers will enjoy.
Another favourite and one that could bring back a lost love of letter writing! is “Dear Dinosaur” by Chae Strathie and Nicola O’Byrne. When a little boy takes a trip to a museum, he decides to write to his favourite (and mine!) dinosaur. Even more amazingly, T-rex writes back and so a wonderful, friendship begins. With real card and letters for your child to read along the way, they will enjoy this funny, factual story and might learn a thing or two about dinosaurs!
And last but not least, a dinosaur tale for bedtime in this cute, cheeky tale from Timothy Knapman and Nikki Dyson. It’s a vaguely familiar story to most mammies about the battle of bedtime and a little boy who loudly declares that “Dinosaurs don’t have bedtimes” and so neither does he! No, this little boy loves to roar and stomp like his favourite dinosaurs and imagines he is a ferocious T-Rex who eats, plays and sleeps when he wants. But Mammy gently guides this terrifying toddler off to bed with a bedtime story and a T-Rex sized snuggle.
I hope you and your little dinosaur fans enjoy these super-sized dinosaur tales (apologies, another pun!) as much as I do!