Top positive review
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Rhyming, Syntax, Humor, Reading and Improved Abs for Dad
on July 27, 2000
This book was a favorite of our four children, especially in helping them realize that they might like to hop on Pop (which they did as much as Pop would let them). This book has really stayed with me, and I was interested to analyze why it is so appealing and effective.
What I discovered upon rereading it today is that the book packs a whallop in terms of providing learning opportunities for children. Long before Sesame Street was a staple for youngsters, this book picked up on some of the same learning techniques.
For example, you start with two rhyming words. The only difference may be one consonant (hop and Pop). This helps a child learn to read by seeing the role that a letter plays. Then the book uses the two words together to form a sentence, and puts an illustration in the reinforce the syntax (the difference between a house on a mouse, and a mouse on a house). After the simple syntax lessons are done, it goes on to give the child more rhymes and more complex sentences. "We like to hop on top of Pop." Here are where Dad's abs come in. The illustration shows how to hop on Pop without hurting him. Also, the book says not to, which will help Pop and the child learn that the subconscious in all people and all children pay no attention to negatives in sentences. So what is captured is an imperative to hop on Pop.
The story builds to a crescendo by letting the child know that there is more to learn. Children can learn small words like "if and it" while Father knows long words like "Constantinople and Timbuktu." The child is given a little quiz at the end about "seehemewe" and so forth and is given the hint that learning can continue tomorrow.
Also, this book provided me more pleasure in being a Father than any other that I read to and with my children. So if you are a Father, get with it. If you want to encourage a Father to be with his children more, get this book to him.
Overcome your stalled thinking about the limits of what can be learned by small children from an introductory reader by using this masterpiece!
. . . and practice tightening your abs!
Coauthor of The Irresistible Growth Enterprise