‘Every hour of every day, we’re smart in our own special way.’

I picked this book up recently in an independent book shop in Oakham, Rutland.  It was advertised as the Independent Booksellers’ Children’s Book of the Month for February, and on reading it, I can completely understand why.

This is such a beautifully-executed, inclusive book.  Written in rhyme, it explains to young readers that being smart is not just about being academically bright – it’s so much more than that.  It’s being creative, sitting still, being imaginative, being kind, paying attention to detail – in fact so many different things, that every child should be able to spot something that they are ‘good’ at or enjoy doing.  Indeed, that’s what I love most about it – every child will be able to see themselves in the book and thus draw confidence and reassurance from it.  The language is simple and effective and is supported by fabulous, (gender-neutral) coloured graphics.  It’s a book that will resonate with all readers, regardless of age – but especially for those in Early Years to Early Key Stage 2 who may be lacking in self-confidence or who feel different from their friends.  I have to say that it touched a little spot in my heart…

All The Ways to be Smart:

Author: Davina Bell
Illustrator: Allison Colpoys
Publisher: Scribble (imprint of Scribe UK)
ISBN: 9781911617556
Hardback: 32 Pages

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