Wednesday, April 6, 2016

50 Below Zero

I am going to introduce another e-book. 50 below Zero by Robert Munsch, illustrated by Michael Martchenko. The one accessible in Overdrive is a Read Along book.

What is a Read Along Book?

A read-along book is a illustrated book for children with accompanying recordings of the books being read.

Personally, I like read-along books because children can learn how to pronounce words by listening to the recordings. When Little One was younger, I would usually sit beside Little One while playing the CDs, pointing out the words to her. After playing a few times, I could leave her alone with the book. She knew when to turn the pages and followed along the story.

Read along e-books are even better, I do not have to be present at all. The words will be highlighted automatically on the computer screen. (see below) All Little One has to do is to sit in front of the computer and let it read to her. She will pick up words along the way.

To use, just click on the "start narration" button, the audio will load, read and load the pages automatically. If you or your child need to take a break, just pause the narration. Should there be a need to stop reading and continue another day, it can be done too. The e-book will load the last page that you have browsed.


A little boy, Jason, has a father who sleepwalks and ends up in unlikely places. Find out how he keeps his father safe, especially when his father walked out their house when it was freezing cold outside.


A very unlikely story because if the father were to be in the cold in just his pajamas, he would probably had frozen to death. Moreover, I doubt Jason had the strength to pull his dad up the stairs. However, in the eyes of children, especially those who has not experienced winter cold, this story is probably believable.

Initially, we borrowed the e-book. However, Little One enjoyed the book so much that we borrowed the hardcopy from the library. I am not sure whether there are 2 editions but apparently, the hard copy I borrowed was a shorter version. It is very simple and I believe is suitable for pre-schoolers.

The read along version is an Andrew Craig Production. It is longer and with repetitive sentences. Suitable for bigger children in the lower primary. Personally, both Little One and I love the voice narrating the story. It is emotional, energetic and engaging. While the background music and sounds are a nice touch to the story, sometimes, it is tad too loud at times that we could not hear what the narrator is saying. The other issue is sound words such as glug, bump and scritch are truly only sounds in the Read Along edition. I prefer that the words would be read though.

Tip for Read Along Books,
You can ask your child/children to read to you without starting the narration . Treat it like a normal e-book.

Linking with:
Growing with the Tans

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