Chinese Readers for Nursery and Kindergarten {Review & Giveaway}

Here’s a really overdue post. I intended to post this in March but due to my boy’s resistance towards learning Mandarin earlier this year, I found it impossible to do so. And because I only recommend items/ services that we’ve found useful, I had no choice but to wait to see if he would grow receptive to the new Chinese readers for Nursery/ Kindergarten level which the kind people from Penpal Whizz sent over in January. If you aren’t familiar with what the PenPal Whizz is, read my review here.

After a (long) wait of a few months, I’m glad to say that my boy is finally opening up to learning the Chinese language! *mad happy dance*

There’s an obvious window of opportunity, and I wasn’t about to let it slip by me. Actually this was about a month ago but I’ve been busy with my girl’s schedule (it was test season in Primary schools) so I’ve finally only managed to sit down to blog proper.

Back to the readers – I was gifted with two sets of Chinese readers:

chinese readers for nursery and kindergarten

There are actually 8 readers in this set but I’ve misplaced 1 for the moment.

Each set of readers comes with flashcards to go along with the books. Each sheet of cardstock consists of 8 words (词汇) and all you have to do when you get your set is to cut these up and store them properly so they aren’t mixed up.

Like just so-

There is a small number on the back of the cards so even if you mixed up the cards you’d be able to tell which book it belongs to. I like to label mine with the title as well on the small bag for my easy reference.

These books are PenPal Whizz compatible – you would need to download the sound files after you purchase them. But even if you don’t have the PenPal Whizz, you can still get these books for your kids as I find that having the cards to go along with the books pretty useful. And now that he’s into flashcards it’s clearly a bonus for us.

The pictures are vibrant and the text is big enough for reading and word recognition. Most of the time I have a big problem with getting suitable books with large enough font for the kids to read and recognise the words.

There are some discussion questions/games at the back of the book and if you have trouble reading the Chinese text, there’s hanyu pinyin on the last page. I think some might find this useful, especially if you aren’t proficient in the language.

Anyway, I personally don’t really like books with hanyu pinyin together with the text for the kids’ reading as there might be an over reliance on hanyu pinyin and hence less focus on the Chinese text.

So how do we use the books?

We read the book first a couple of times. As my boy is not very strong in Chinese, I do have to translate parts of it to him. After that I pick out a  maximum of 3 cards each session for him to identify in the story and we read the cards a few times through.

Now the best part for my readers – the generous people from JLB Educational Technology are giving away the two sets of readers to two lucky blog readers (one set for each winner)!

You can win by simply leaving a comment on this blog post and remembering to click ‘I Commented’ in the Rafflecopter widget to qualify. The rest of the options are optional, but would render you more chances to win!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

*Note: One set of readers per winning household only.

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Lovely and constructive comments are welcomed. Do hop over to my Facebook page where I connect with my readers and I would love to have you following me on Pinterest, Twitter and Instagram too :)

Posted in Books, Giveaways, Homeschooling, Reviews, Teaching Mandarin | 47 Comments

Kid Hero Stories: Personalised e-Books for children {Review & Giveaway}

When I was approached by Kid Hero Stories a few months back, I was intrigued by the entire notion that by simply submitting photos of my kids (with them looking directly at the camera), the team at Kidherostories would be able to come up with a personalised e-book. That definitely sounded pretty exciting, especially for the kids to see themselves featured in a storybook!

First page of our very first e-book! Pretty cool, huh?

Instead of fighting the prevalent use of technology in our lives, Kidherostories decided to utilise it better by injecting some personality and originality into techtime and at the same time converting it into memories that can be cherished for a lifetime. Don’t you think the screenshot of the first page of our first e-book shows so much promise?

Kid Hero Stories offers your child the opportunity to be the hero of the adventure stories, a definite plus point for those with reluctant readers. I’m sure that would be a difficult book to turn away from!

A snapshot of our second e-book

I like that the text is simple, and easy to read and the colours are vibrant and eye-catching. I think you’d agree that this is something that would appeal to kids, what’s more it features them as the main characters! My kids were super thrilled to see themselves in the e-books and asked if there were more stories for them to read 😀

Our third e-book

When you subscribe to the eBooks, you will receive a new personalized adventure eBook every week by email. It isn’t exorbitant either – if you SUBSCRIBE (4 books per mth until cancelled), it’s from USD$7.90 per month.

There are currently 4 series of eBooks available: Toddler Series, Pre-School Series, Early Reader Series and Siblings Series. There is also a Family Tailored Premium Series. Check out Kidherostories for the details. You can view the e-books on your computer, laptop, phone or iPad so basically you can view it on just about any device that you have. You can even print them out on your own after receiving the soft copy! This would make a wonderful gift as well!

Now for the good news! Kids Hero Stories is sponsoring THREE lucky readers THREE e-books (each winner gets three e-books)!! You can win by simply leaving a comment on this blog post and remembering to click ‘I Commented’ in the Rafflecopter widget to qualify. The rest of the options are optional, but would render you more chances to win!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclosure: I received three e-books for purposes for the review. No other compensation was received.

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Lovely and constructive comments are welcomed. Do hop over to my Facebook page where I connect with my readers and I would love to have you following me on Pinterest, Twitter and Instagram too :)

Posted in Books, Giveaways, Reviews | 14 Comments