Learning about our planet

Mikey and Alita reading togetherThis product talk is brought to you by Nuffnang and Lonely Planet Kids

It was over 20 years ago that I first caught the travel bug. Back then, if you wanted to find more information about a country that you planned to visit you had to pop down to your local Library or book shop to pick up the Lonely Planet Guide or the Rough Guide for the country in question. It’s so much easier to find out any information that you need these days, but even in todays world it still pays to carry a Guide book in your backpack for those times when -Shock, Horror – you can’t access the internet.

It’s been a few years now since I last put down my backpack and I now have three intelligent little 3 year olds in my life who are just soaking up any information that they can get their tiny hands on. You can imagine my excitement when I heard that Lonely planet had launched “Lonely Planet Kids” and were asking kids to “Come explore”.

As well as a range of books and app products, Lonely planet kids also has a dedicated website and social media pages on Facebook and Twitter, all created to help grown-up wanderlusters everywhere inspire the little ones in their life about the world!

We were recently lucky enough to be sent some books from the Lonely Planet Kids range to review.

We received:

Amazing World Atlas

lonelyplanetkids world atlas

and,

Adventures in Smelly Places (Sticker and Activity Book)

Adventures in smelly places book

Alita, Loki and Michael have already travelled in 4 different countries and they regularly Skype their Grandparents who are in the UK so they already have some understanding of Maps, Time-Zones and different cultures.

Amazing World Atlas

When we first opened the Amazing World Atlas we were presented with a page full of National Flags, I asked everyone “Which is the flag for Australia?” Alita was the first to find it.

Alita pointing at the Aussie flag

The first 25 pages of the book are packed with interesting facts about our planet. Everything from our solar system and the phases of the moon to explaining different kinds of maps and their uses and so much more in between.

Alita, Loki & Mikey enjoyed looking at the different kinds of maps and asked me to point out where we are on the maps and then where various relatives and friends live. Obviously at 3 years old they are limited as to how much they can take in and understand (not to mention the limited attention span) so we skipped through this section quickly just stopping to read some of the quirky facts that are scattered throughout. Did you know that Samoa deleted a whole day from their calendar (30 Dec 2011) and went from being one of the last places to see in the New year to one of the first?

The second section of the book is where we had the most fun. There is a chapter for each continent which is then broken down into different areas within that continent. The layout is very visual with photo’s and paintings of all kinds of weird and wonderful things that are relevant to each place as well as plenty of quick facts dotted around each page.

We looked up places that we have visited and talked about the pictures that we found. Komodo dragons in Southeast Asia, fish at the Great barrier reef, granny smith apples in Sydney and Fairytale castles in Europe.

Mikey pointing at England.

The Amazing World Atlas is going to be an awesome resource when Alita, Loki & Michael start school and begin to learn more about the world around them, at the moment they are enjoying just looking at the pictures but over the next few years I can see this kick-starting the travel bug and opening their eyes and mind to the world around them.

Lonely planet kids say “Our focus is on showcasing the quirky facts, amusing tales and inspiring stories that bring our planet to life.”

Adventures in Smelly Places

This series of sticker and activity books are aimed at children aged 3-5.

The level of interest from everyone picked up when we moved on to this book. I even ended up having to read everyone a section each of the book at bedtime as well.

Three year olds love talking about things being smelly. When we first started reading the book it took me a while to convince Loki that things can be smelly in a good way, like the chocolate factory in Yogyakarta and the plantation of vanilla orchids in Costa Rica but I think he understood in the end. Each page in this book has so much going on, one of the things that everyone enjoyed was asking me to read the little comments that the people and animals were making in the speech bubbles.

Pointing at a shark

-Photo credit to Mikey!!! –  the seal in this picture is saying “You missed me!”

The pages of stickers in the back of the book are clearly marked to show which pages to use them on and there are prompts on the relevant pages to tell you what to do with the stickers, all of those pages are laminated so that you can re-move your stickers after you’ve placed them and re-arrange them.

There are also pages for colouring in and a quiz section at the back of the book.

I can see that we’re going to have many more hours of fun with this book.

Find out more about Lonely planet kids by visiting their website Here

 “Through Lonely Planet Kids, we hope to share our love of travel, our sense of humour and our continual fascination with what makes the world the diverse and magnificent place it is.”

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