Monday 5 November 2012

Spotlight on Child's Play International - Innovative and Inclusive Children's Book Publishers

I can't remember the first time I realised that Child's Play were behind some of Charlotte's favourite early books. Back when we paid more attention to the content and the title than the publisher, we used to regularly borrow and buy Child's Play's excellent range of nursery rhyme and sing / dance along board books like "If you're Happy and you Know It".

We were recently re-introduced to Child's Play's books through Beth Cox (who used to work for the company and still, quite rightly, champions their approach to producing thought-provoking, educational and inspiring work). We think that Child's Play are worth shouting from the rooftops about too, so we thought we'd take a closer look at the company and some of their book ranges.

Child's Play - 1976. Dig that funky fashion!
Founded by Michael Twinn back in 1972, Child's Play celebrates its 40th year with a fantastic range of books, audio-visual materials and projects linking the publishing house to larger companies like ITV (for the CITV Signed Stories series featuring some of Child's Play's best loved storybook titles), and also to some of the best and brightest talents in children's books.

Child's Play's focus on diversity and equality aims to reinforce the rich tapestry woven by stories from around the world, from different cultures and wholly embracing the ethos that children from all wakes of life, regardless of their age, nationality, disability, gender or culture can learn from and enjoy great books and materials produced to the highest standards.

Here's just a selection of the various book ranges that Child's Play publish:

Child's Play Baby Books 

Durable board books that are great to read and sing along with. Colourful illustrations, great rhymes and sing-a-long bum-wiggling fun. It's never too early to start reading to your babies, or getting them to join in and these are a fantastic place to start.

Baby Signing

We're great believers in baby signing, Charlotte was encouraged and taught to 'sign' from a very early age long before she began to speak properly, and the Child's Play Baby Signing books follow the widely recognised British Sign Language standards. The books cross a wide range of subjects encouraging parents and their children to learn common signs and have fun and play while they learn.

Flip Up Fairy Tales

New child-friendly retellings of classic Fairy Tales, with interesting lift-up panels (and accompanying narrated CDs) to enjoy anywhere, encouraging children's natural curiosity and thirst for adventure and excitement. Classic tales in this range are often retold to encourage children to think of traditional stories in a whole new way, free from the usual heavy merchandising and commercialisation of other brands that tap into the same rich fairy tale traditions.

Information Books

Factual books for when your children are a little older and want to learn more about their world (and indeed their universe!) Child's Play information books are packed with interesting facts, and are beautifully presented in various formats to help children begin their learning journeys.

Children's Picture Books

Thought-provoking, inclusive and engaging picture books that gather together some of the most talented authors and illustrators in children's books to contribute to a fantastic range of the highest quality. It's a brilliant range covering diverse subjects, from the joyous and mischievous to the sometimes dark and moody.

This is just a small selection of Child's Play's book selection. More can be found at the Child's Play Website.

Please also visit Beth Cox's Editorial and Advisory Site at