REVIEW |A Must-Have for Preschooler’s Library

Timmy and Tammy

A must- have for your preschooler’s library, Timmy and Tammy series lets your child discover different places of Singapore

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Used worldwide by educators, the guided approach to reading is one of the most effective literacy approaches. A core concept of this approach is that children learn to read more effectively if they are able to develop a connection and familiarity with the story and pictures.

This is why the Timmy and Tammy ‘Let Me Read’ series published by Armour Publishing and set in Singapore is an ideal choice for pre-schoolers. Often Singaporean children –s no different from children in a multitude of other countries –have to make do with stories that include contexts and locations which are often foreign to them. While the unfamiliar can spike a child’s imagination, home-grown literature creates an important cognitive connection too.

Written by a mom of three, Ruth Wan-Lau and illustrated by Eliz Ong, Timmy and Tammy series of books allow the child to build a connection with the sights and sounds of Singapore. Ruth is a writer and a children’s book editor for 16 years and the series was chosen to be part of the SG50 Baby Jubilee Gift Pack to be given to all Singaporean babies born in 2015.

The books have four levels of reading difficulty from simple words to more complex sentence structures. Timmy and Tammy Series 2 deals with visits to some of the most popular places in Singapore. My personal favourite is At the Singapore Flyer. The kids and their parents visit the flyer and the children try and distract a scared little boy by playing the ‘I Spy” game with him. Through this game, Timmy and Tammy talk off the sights of Singapore from the flyer. They spy boats on the river, giraffe-like structures (the loading cranes at the port), and a durian (The Esplanade) to name a few.

Other books in the series of five include books about the Singapore Zoo: At the River Safari and At the Zoo where two pandas, Kai Kai and Jia Jia make an appearance in the book about the River Safari. At Chinatown and At Gardens by the Bay .

The books are ideal for reading aloud with your child, repeating words to encourage learning. Such as, “We smell the chestnuts. We smell the barbecued meat. Everything smells so good.” Here repeating the word ‘smell’ helps children develop a memory and an understanding of the word.

Liz Eng’s illustration are beautifully done, giving the series the feeling of colour and cheer as in a picture book.

In all, a must have for your pre-schoolers library.


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