Children's Book Review

Review: Pop Out and Play Series

This week we’ve been reading (…and playing) with two brilliant board books from the series Pop Out and Play by Robyn Gale and illustrated by Barry Green (Imagine That Publishers). If your children like imaginative play, love role playing what they’ve read in a book and enjoy holding onto ‘props’ during reading- these books are for you!

These gorgeous stories include (sturdy!) play pieces that can pop out of the board book to be played with. We’ve been taking a look at:

Builder’s Toolkit– which comes complete with cardboard saw, drill, screws and nails to play with. My children enjoyed attempting to saw, drill and generally ‘fix’ things around the house and in the book!


Shopping List– which includes cardboard food to choose and pretend to put in your trolley as you go round the supermarket in the story, great for role playing shops.

What do we like about them?

  • Tempts Children Towards Books- My immediate thoughts when I first saw these books was how much they would tempt, even the most reluctant of readers, to come and have a listen to these books. I mean, as far as I’m aware, there aren’t many books where you can say “do you want to play with the saw or the drill, or both..whilst we read?” But in Builder’s Toolkit you can! My prediction proved correct when I introduced the children to the books-the chunky, fun, play pieces were like a magnet attracting the children to them! What a brilliant way of encouraging children to engage with the story and hopefully fuel a lifelong love of reading.

  • Role Play– Young children often love role playing real life jobs and these books provide all the props and background information for children to pretend to be builders or pretend to do the supermarket shop. What I especially love about these books is that you don’t need to go out and buy a pretend shopping til or a play toolkit- a child has everything they need in the book! Much better value and takes up a lot less space than toys!

  • Develop Skills– Not only do these books help reinforce an understanding of real-life situations and jobs through reading and play, but they also aid a whole host of other skills, one of which is hand-eye coordination. Children can develop their hand-eye coordination and problem solving skills by taking out and putting back the pieces into the correct position; a bit like doing a jigsaw puzzle- children need to manipulate the piece correctly in order for it to fit. Speech and language skills can also be developed using this book as often physically holding an object helps a child to learn it’s name. For example, using the Shopping List book children can hold each pretend piece of food whilst learning the name, reinforcing it further. In terms of speech and language skills I also noticed there are lots of fantastic adjectives used throughout to enhance a child’s vocabulary.

  • Great for Beginner Readers– These books have lovely, simple text that would be brilliant for young children who are starting school and beginning to learn to read. We also loved the use of onomatopoeia on each double page.

  • Practical– From a practical point of view, these books tick all the boxes. The pieces are very sturdy and aren’t going to get tatty after a couple of plays. Also the pieces stay in place when you put them back and don’t fall out of the book, helping you not to loose precious play pieces.

Where can you buy it?

Buy them on Amazon here or Hive here. Visit Imagine That Publishers website here.

Why not follow Imagine That on Social Media?

Here’s their Twitter, Instagram and Facebook pages.

* Please note this blog post was sponsored. All thoughts and opinions are our own.

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