When was the last time you learned a new skill? Adults generally know how to perform the actions of daily living. When they choose to learn a new hobby, it’s often to try something new – whether it’s taking Spanish lessons or learning a new instrument, they signed up with intend to enjoy a new activity.
For children, however, things are not so simple. There are so many people we still have to discover and so much preparation to do before we are ready for new adventures. With so much to learn, facing yet another challenging new task can be daunting. The art of tying shoelaces is just one such task, and one that children often struggle with. But if you’re having trouble learning to tie your shoes, fear not. Author Sybrina Durant set out to teach shoelacing in her new book “Boo’s Shoes – A Rabbit and Fox Story: Learn to Tie Shoelaces.”
An aficionado of countless shoes, Boo the Rabbit is thrilled with his collection. He has cowboy boots, rollerblades and even a pair of bright sneakers! Best of all, none of these shoes have laces, and that’s how he likes them.
So it’s understandable that Boo isn’t particularly thrilled when his friend Farah Fox brings along a new pair of lace-up sneakers. Although Farah can see that he is skeptical, she assures him that once they practice together, Boo will become a pro in no time. She reminds him that learning to tie knots isn’t just for shoelaces: “You can use ropes or strings to rig a sail, fly a kite…make bracelets to share with friends.
Encouraged by his words, Boo agrees to learn. As the two sit down and pick up their shoelaces, the illustrations in the book change to include diagrams of each step in tying a pair of shoelaces. As Farah guides Boo through every step, these clear visual instructions will help young readers learn alongside the book’s protagonist. Thanks to the patient teaching of Farah Fox, you will soon master the classic “bunny-loop” knot!
When it comes to teaching young children new skills, making it feel like a chore is a recipe for disaster. By turning the lesson of tying shoelaces into something fun, “Boo’s Shoes” helps young readers hope to learn new skills, rather than feeling pressured to try something out of their comfort zone. It helps that the story is an enjoyable read: Pumudi Gardiyawasam’s colorful illustrations will grab your attention, while Durant’s lyrical rhymes will make the read-aloud experience fun for both parties.
And speaking of lyrics – even after the story is over, this book isn’t done with the fun. The book includes a song called “No Laces”, as well as a celebratory badge that can be used as a reward. Even the adults get a guide on how to teach the lesson properly, encouraging them to make the experience both educational and fun for the kids.