For every parent who is about to embark on a long journey, activity books can offer a lifeline and help delay the inevitable ‘are we nearly there yet?’ They can also provide an inexpensive way to keep children amused on a rainy day. But when you walk into any bookshop you will be faced by a huge variety to choose from, how do you decide which ones will manage to captivate your child for more than half an hour. Me and my girls decided to test out a wide variety of books to see if they kept us entertained.
Think and Make Like An Artist – Claudia Boldt & Eleanor Meredith
This is an activity book guaranteed to have your children engaged and enthralled. First, children discover how artists think, research and experiment, then they try art projects for themselves. If like me you struggle to be creative with your children and the thought of pva glue, tissue paper and paint turns your mind to jelly then this is the book for you. Combining clear visual instructions but still allowing children’s imagination to roam free, it invites them to create unique artworks and join in with fun activities. It also helps encourage children to make their own creative decisions, giving them the confidence to express themselves and experiment with a wide range of media including painting, sculpture, photography, costume design, illustration and many more.
Woodland Hedgehugs Activity Book – Lucy Tapper & Steve Wilson
I’m a big fan of the lovely Hedgehugs books, so I was delighted that Maverick Books had produced a gorgeous activity book which encourages children to explore the woodlands together with Horace and Hettie. I love how this combines inviting children to go outside, with rainy day activities for when it’s just too wet to brave the big outdoors. Children can go on a bug hunt, collect a rainbow of leaves, crunch through leaves and build a den. There is so much to do and see with this lovely book it’s a perfect way to coax children into the great outdoors on a woodland adventure. Perfect to keep younger children amused on a long walk and provide lots of fun activities for when they get home.
Under Earth/Under Water – Aleksandra and Daniel Mizielinski
Me and my girls absolutely loved ‘Under Earth, Under Water’ so we were really excited to receive these companion activity books in the post, just in time for the Easter holidays. Packed full of facts and activities these activity books will keep children amused for hours on end. In ‘Under Earth’ you can complete a dinosaur skeleton, visit an underground city and pack passengers into the Tokyo subway. Come on a drawing expedition in ‘Under Water’, create your own coral reef, find the shortest route through the wreck of the Titanic and wrestle with the tentacles of a colossal squid. Gloriously illustrated, these books will capture your child’s imagination and help them find out lots of fascinating facts on the way.
We’re Going On An Egg Hunt Activity – Illustrated by Laura Hughes
This is the gorgeous Easter treat, so if you’re looking for an alternative gift to chocolate this is the activity book you need. Accompanying the beautiful picture book ‘We’re Going on an Egg Hunt’ sublimely illustrated by Laura Hughes, this book is packed with puzzles, stickers, games and much more. Join in the fun with the Easter Bunnies as they play hide and seek, make their way through mazes, help animals find their way home as they go about on their Easter Egg Hunt. Pitched perfectly for younger readers they will love decorating eggs, completing word searches and making Easter bunting.
Botanicum Activity Book – Katie Scott & Kathy Willis
‘Botanicum‘ is back and this time Katie Scott & Kathy Willis have produced the most sublime activity book. Bursting with fascinating facts and puzzles, this book offers hours of entertainment to artists and nature lovers, young and old. Featuring a myriad of activities it challenges the reader to discover something new and use their imagination to draw, decorate and design. Like ‘Botanicum’ this divine celebration of plants features a colourful array of intricate and dazzling illustrations combined with comprehensive botanical knowledge. An absolute joy of an activity book.
Thank you to Big Picture Press, Bloomsbury, Thames and Hudson and Maverick Books for sending me copies of these amazing activity books.