Tap the Magic Tree by Christie Matheson is a fun, interactive book libraries can circulate. Lift-the-flaps and pop-up books aren’t practical. It only takes one or two checkouts before most are destroyed. To my knowledge interactive books requiring small motor skills, other than turning the book pages; but don’t include pop-ups or lift-the flaps are a recent addition to children’s literature. I could be wrong. The clever Press Here by Herve Tullet is the first I remember. Rest assured Tap the Magic Tree isn’t a copycat. It’s a unique story using similar interactivity. I hope similar books with great stories continue to be published. I’m ready to share this one at story time.
This book is perfect for learning about seasons and how trees change throughout the year. It all starts with a bare tree on a white background. The first page instructed ML to tap the tree once and turn the page. Magically a leaf appeared on the tree on the next page. From there she tapped again and again. Each page more leaves appeared. After rubbing it warm… buds and flowers appear. When the apples appeared, ML was instructed to shake the tree. She grabbed the book from me and shook it all over the bed. Knocking, patting and clapping followed on other pages. Clapping brought the… SNOW! As ML clapped it was snowing here. A real, sticking to the ground snow. We haven’t seen a real snowfall in three years. ML screamed, “Mommy, it’s snowing just like here. Let’s go look at the backyard again.”
While waiting for the school’s closed announcement, I sent an email to neighbors. “We have two great sledding hills on our block but no sled. Anyone want to join us in the morning with a sled. I know school hasn’t been cancelled yet. But really… we know what’s going to happen.”
Sleds and children were found this morning. Five children, four sleds and one mommy to watch for cars made for perfect snow fun. Only two “almost” accidents. ML and friend sled into a parked car. No damage to car or children. Her other friend’s sled swerved suddenly to the drain on the curb. I ran and kept her from disappearing. From then on, I was traffic and drainage patrol.
Five minutes after the kids came inside to warm up, one of the other moms showed up with a kettle of steaming hot cocoa and marshmallows. We had Girl Scout cookies here. Thin Mints and Peanut Butter Patties go very well with hot chocolate. All in all, a perfect day.