Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Dot., by Randi Zuckerberg & Joe Berger (ages 4 - 8)

I know I'm not alone, but I wonder at times just how much television my kids can watch if left to their own devices. We all wanted time to rest and relax over vacation, but for many kids (mine included) this seems to mean unlimited TV time. A new picture book Dot., by Randi Zuckerberg and Joe Berger, really appeals to me for the way it helps us all think about our screen time and outside time.
by Randi Zuckerberg
illustrated by Joe Berger
Harper Collins, 2013
ages 4-8
your local library
Dot knows her way around an iPad, a laptop, a cell phone. She's a kid the media might call "a digital native," home with any and all devices. But one day she's tapped out, fried. So her mom tells her that it's time to go outside and reboot, recharge.

I love the twist that happens as Dot spends time outside, realizing that she loves tapping, tagging and sharing in a different way. You can get a nice sense of the book from this trailer:

Some might say that this book is heavy-handed, but I found the spare text and bright, energetic cartoon illustrations created a fun spin on a situation many kids know very well. The overall design of the book keeps the pacing moving, and lets readers enjoy the word play and humor.

Yes, Randi Zuckerberg is the former marketing director of Facebook and sister of Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg. Yes, this could be seen as an ironic twist for a Silicon Valley celebrity, and she's certainly getting plenty of media coverage. But really, I approach this book as a mom who's fried after a vacation where her kids just wanted to watch TV instead of walking on the beach. Reading Dot. is a whole lot more fun than nagging kids to put away their iPads and turn off the TV.

The review copy was kindly sent by the publishers, HarperCollins. If you make a purchase using the Amazon links on this site, a small portion goes to Great Kid Books (at no cost to you!). Thank you for your support.

©2013 Mary Ann Scheuer, Great Kid Books

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