Axel Scheffler illustrates Coronavirus explanation book for kids (free download)

The Greenwich Mummy Blog | London Family and Lifestyle Blogger

*This article was extracted from: Sky News*

A free children’s book about the coronavirus illustrated by the award-winning Gruffalo artist Axel Scheffler has been downloaded hundreds of thousands of times.

Coronavirus: A Book for Children is aimed at five to nine-year-olds and hopes to simply answer key questions they may be asking their parents or carers about the COVID-19 outbreak.

It has been written by staff at the publishing house Nosy Crow, with expert input from Professor Graham Medley of the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and advice from two headteachers and a child.

The book is aimed at 5-9 year olds

The opening page reads:

“There’s a new word you might have heard. You might hear people talking about it or you might hear it on the news.

This word is the reason that you’re not going to school. It is the reason you can’t go outside very often or visit your friends … But what is it and why is everyone talking about it?

The word is coronavirus.”

In just the first 24 hours the digital book was accessed over 100,000 times directly from the publisher’s website and hundreds of thousands of times further from other hosts.

Scheffler, who worked with author Julia Donaldson to illustrate The Gruffalo and many other books, said: “I asked myself what I could do as a children’s illustrator to inform, as well as entertain, my readers here and abroad. So I was glad when my publisher, Nosy Crow, asked me to illustrate this question-and-answer book about the coronavirus.”

It answers key questions in a simple way

“I think it is extremely important for children and families to have access to good and reliable information in this unprecedented crisis, and I hope that the popularity of the books I’ve done with Julia Donaldson will ensure that this digital book will reach many children who are now slightly older, but might still remember our picture books.”

It is available for free

Demand for the book means it has already been translated into 17 languages. Kate Wilson, managing director of Nosy Crow, said: “We have just been overwhelmed with the response to our book.”

Professor Medley added: “This pandemic is changing children’s lives across the globe and will have a lasting impact on us all. Helping children understand what is going on is an important step in helping them cope and making them part of the story – this is something that we are all going through, not something being done to them. This book puts children IN the picture rather just watching it happen, and in a way that makes the scary parts easier to cope with.”

Click below to download your free digital copy:
Coronavirus: A book for children, illustrated by Axel Scheffler (PDF format)


Mog’s Christmas Calamity Is A Brilliant Read!

The Greenwich Mummy | Mogs Christmas Calamity Review

This is the new advert from Sainsbury’s. It’s a short film adaptation of the children’s book, Mog’s Christmas Calamity by Judith Kerr which is out now in most stores – we picked up ours in a Sainsbury’s Local. I hadn’t seen the advert for the book before today (I purchased the book last night) and can say that the advert is really stunning. It depicts all of the main events in the book and was a real joy to watch.

love Judith Kerr and am now really gutted I missed out on the chance to take LO to one of her book readings in Bath earlier this summer for the Bath Children’s Festival as she was there reading her famous book, “The Tiger Who Came To Tea”. Since then I had made a secret vow to myself that I will find another chance to get LO to see her again one day but in the meantime will try to spoil him with her books instead.

Judith Kerr: Mogs Christmas Calamity Review

Judith Kerr: Mogs Christmas Calamity Review
A page from the book

In the book, “Mog” the cat has a very bad dream about birds chasing her and wakes up bewildered. She realises that something had got caught on to her tail and as she tries her best to shake it off, she gets herself into trouble by getting it caught on fire. She spreads the fire to a rug before making a dash out of the house and down the street before meeting a fire engine which chased her back home. After the fire was put out and everyone was safe, they believed that Mog was a hero and that she saved them (not knowing that she actually caused the fire). Reality then set in on Mog’s family and they realised that their Christmas was ruined and everyone felt sad. Then a member of the family noticed something amazing – the whole neighborhood came back to bring gifts, food and friends to help Mog’s family celebrate Christmas despite the calamitous event earlier. The story ends with the family building a snowman together and the son asks the father if they can “do exactly the same next year” to which the father replies “well… perhaps not exactly”. A fabulously lighthearted ending to a wonderful story.

I would like to think that I am passionate about improving child literacy and ever since I started by Beanstalk volunteering role, any little bit that I can do to help support the cause, I will try to. The book itself is only £3.00 so it’s brilliant that all the profits made from each book will go to charity. It’s all part of Save the Children’s ‘Read On. Get On. campaign.

Mog’s Christmas Calamity would make a great gift for someone this Christmas or even just a fantastic read with the whole family when it’s time for story-telling. What I love most about the book is that it also teaches children about the gift of giving – what Christmas is about. It also teaches children about caring for others, helping others when they are in need, and most importantly sharing with each other to bring happiness to all. 🙂

I’ve already read this to LO and he loves it. He also loved watching the Sainsbury’s ad of ‘Moggy’ (what we call her) and this is a story that will definitely be read again in the lead up to the special day!

If you want to see more about the making of the Sainbury’s ad, click the following link:

LostMy.Name: My Personalised Story Books Review

I simply adore this personalised story book from LostMy.Name. I first stumbled upon it when I was searching for a birthday present for LO last year. You have to place the order for the book online but what’s great is that the website is user-friendly and interactive so you actually get to see your ‘final product’ before you place the order. Like the hard copy, you can flip through all the pages of the book and see what’s in store.

I decided to place an order for a friend’s child (a boy), put in his name then clicked ‘create book’. It then showed me a full preview of the book and all of the stories for the letters in the child’s name then at the end, there was a buy now button which I clicked then placed my order.. it was really as simple as that. You can even give it a go yourself if you fancy! It doesn’t cost anything to play around with and you don’t have to register your details until you’re ready to checkout.

The Greenwich Mummy
A screenshot of the book preview

At £18.99 it is slightly more pricier than some of the other personalised story books I found including popular characters like Peppa Pig however it’s free shipping which is an added bonus. Delivery can take up to 2 weeks unless you order the express delivery which aims to deliver in just one week. The reason for the lengthy duration is because every book is made to order from scratch; that includes sourcing the stories, binding of the pages, and then packaging it perfectly to be sent out to you securely. I think mine took about 1.5 weeks so it wasn’t too long of a wait.

All in all the book is fantastic and definitely my favourite personalised story book so far. There’s even an option of including a dedication page (for free!) which gets printed on the first page of the book to make it that little bit extra special. Welll done to the creators that’s all I can say.

One for boys and one for girls
LostMy.Name personalised book

Get 15% Off Your First Book
If you are interested in purchasing one for your little one or for a friend, family member just click this link to get 15% off your first book. Once you’ve bought a book, you’ll also receive your own refer-a-friend link which you can hand out to others and they can also claim the discount. Sharing is caring!

Teach Your Child Another Language With Bi-Lingual Books

The Greenwich Mummy | Multi-lingual Family
Our multi-lingual, multi-cultural family

Okay, so I’m Vietnamese and Daddy’s Congolese (French-speaking) means that LO is a little multi-lingual machine. He’s mastered baby-English and fully understands Vietnamese but can’t speak it yet, and can grasp a few phrases in French and when I ask him “ça va, Kaleb?”, to which he replies “oui, maman” – so adorable! 🙂

That’s when I had my light-bulb moment – I need to get LO learning French now while it’s still easy for him. Mastering three languages can become difficult as he gets older so the saying “the sooner the better” really is actually true in the case of learning languages. I headed down to my local library and picked up two bi-lingual books (French/English) that I really liked the look of. I chose these two specific books as they’re not too bulky, have lots of pictures that accurately tell the story of the book, and (of course) were super-easy to read as I am a little rusty with my French.

bilingual books

The book on the left, “Lucie Chat a la ferme” is all about a cat named Lucy who went to visit her local farm one Sunday. She saw ducks, chickens, and lots of other animals. I really loved this book as the back of the book had a little picture dictionary of keywords in French and English, and it also showed me how to phonetically pronounce the words. This came in really handy as I don’t want LO’s French pronunciation to be terrible like mine haha 🙂

The book on the right titled “Miam-miam! Allons manger!” is all about different families and their country’s popular dish. I loved it as it’s great for teaching LO about diversity, different countries and their cuisines. For example, there’s a Spanish family eating paella, a Japanese family eating sushi, and a  Moroccan family eating cous cous and tagine. At the end of the book, the author recaps the different families and their country’s flag. This helps me to teach LO about countries as well as food and culture.

I highly recommend these books but there are loads of bi-lingual books available from local libraries that there’s simply no need to purchase your own… unless you feel like you need to own the books or really don’t fancy picking up the occasional tattered book then go ahead, buy your own. To be honest, most of the bi-lingual books are kept in really good condition and many popular children’s books including “The Giant Turnip” are available in a wide range of languages from Punjabi to Chinese to Polish. So even if you don’t speak another language but still remember a few Italian/Spanish/French words from school, get one of these books out and brush up on your story-telling in another language. 🙂

Have fun reading!Manny | The Greenwich Mummy Signature