'Tis the season for road trips to see far-flung family. 'Tis the season for a whole bunch of other stuff too, of course, but focusing solely on the traveling aspect is the perfect setup to talk about Backseat A-B-See by Maria van Lieshout. And talk about it I will, quite easily, since it has been in heavy rotation with my kids for weeks and has already logged in an impressive amount of miles in the backseat.
Once again, a simple concept presented artfully has managed to capture my kids' imaginations. The alphabet is presented in crisp white letters against a black background with the accompanying road signs adding nice pops of color. While the primary goal of teaching the alphabet is easily evident, all of the secondary teachable moments begin to reveal themselves after a few readings. Shapes, colors, spelling, vocabulary, and numbers are just a few of the things I have covered, and no doubt a few more angles will reveal themselves over time.
I believe what my 3.5 year old daughter enjoys about it most is the mastery she can display over the subject matter. Sure, she knew her alphabet already, but now she knows what a merge sign looks like, and what it means as well. The same goes for detour, yield, and pedestrian crossing signs. The other day she blew a passerby's mind because as we walked past a parking spot for the disabled she calmly stated 'Look Daddy, it's Van Accessible.'
As adults, it is easy to forget how prevalent signs are in our everyday life. For kids, each one is a chance to learn, and subsequently a chance to show the world that they are in the know. Backseat A-B-See is a great way to jump-start that process.
Title: Backseat A-B-See
Author/Illustrator: Maria van Lieshout
Publisher: Chronicle Books (2012)
Age group: Two to six
Best for kids who: enjoy letters, street signs and the open road
Find the book at your local library, independent bookstore, or Amazon: Backseat A-B-See by Maria van Lieshout
Apartment Therapy Media makes every effort to test and review products fairly and transparently. The views expressed in this review are the personal views of the reviewer and this particular product review was not sponsored or paid for in any way by the manufacturer or an agent working on their behalf. However, the manufacturer did give us the product for testing and review purposes.