Come clip-clop with me to the farm where Mini-Moi lives. Author Kim Chatel and illustrator Kathleen Bullock present a charming picture book for small children in Clip-Clop, Tippity-Tap: French Vocabulary on the Farm, made available by Guardian Angel Publishing.
Mini-Moi is a very small horse. In fact, he is so small, he cannot do the kinds of chores farm horses usually do. He cannot be hitched side-by-side with a big horse to pull the hay cart. He cannot plow the field. He cannot herd sheep with Farmer Yvette.
Mini-Moi’s hooves do not make the loud Thump! Thump! sound of the work horses. They make a gentler Clip-Clop, Tippity-Tap sound.
Surely, there is some job a small horse can do. If you’ve ever had that useless feeling, you know how Mini-Moi feels. He has a caring heart and wants to be helpful.
Feeling a bit disheartened, Mini-Moi Tippity-Taps out the gate of the farm.
Mini-Moi is not discouraged for long. In his ramble through the countryside and forest, he meets several little friends who need a helping hand. Mini-Moi is the perfect size to help. He gives a lift to kittens, baby chicks, an injured peacock, a tired little piglet, and a hen with a basket of eggs. A lost sheep holds on to his tail. Mini-Moi even carries home the mail. Farmer Yvette praises him for being so helpful. “Bravo, Mini-Moi!”
If you go Tippity-Tapping along with Mini-Moi, you will learn some French words. Labels are put on some of the pictures in both French and English, for instance, “arbre [arbr] Tree.”
The illustrations by Kathleen Bullock take you to a place where you would like to live, or at least visit. The farm is homelike and inviting and the countryside is fresh and peaceful in pastel colors.
This is the kind of book a child likes to hear over and over so he can repeat the sounds he has become familiar with. Each animal has its own sound, and they are different in French than they are in English. The frog says, “Croa, croa,” and the bird, “Cui, cui.” And certain French phrases, such as, “Salut, mon petit,” meaning “Good morning, little one,” and “Oui, nous sommes occupés,” meaning, “Yes, we are busy,” are explained at the end of the book.
There is also a list of French words found in the story and a list of animal sounds in English and French. What better way to start learning another language than in a beautiful picture book?
This is another of Guardian Angel Publishing’s highly entertaining and informative books for young children. It is available in print paperback, ebook/PDF, and eBook CD for the computer.
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