Myra here.

It’s Monday, What are You Reading is a meme hosted by Jen from Teach Mentor Texts and Kellee and Ricki from Unleashing Readers (brainchild of Sheila at BookJourney). Since two of our friends, Linda from Teacher Dance and Tara from A Teaching Life have been joining this meme for quite awhile now, we thought of joining this warm and inviting community.

Last Week’s Review and Miscellany Posts

We’re also inviting everyone to join our Award Winning Books Reading Challenge for 2015 (#AWBRead2015)! It’s that time of the year to set new reading goals for the coming year.


Here is the sign up page and the January-February linky if you already have reviews up. One randomly-selected participant would receive a copy of Deep Blue by Jennifer Donnelly, courtesy of Pansing books. Click here to view my announcement post to learn more details. 

Widget courtesy of the talented Iphigene.
Widget courtesy of the talented Iphigene.

We have just launched our new reading theme from January-February 2015. As I was searching for titles that I have read as a child, I waxed nostalgic upon discovering that most of my early reader/beginner books are actually available in our public libraries here in Singapore. And so over the next few weeks, you would see beloved reads, and books that I am confident were instrumental in making me the reader that I am now.

IMG_8841Fox In Socks

Written and Illustrated by: Dr. Seuss
Published by: Random House Children’s Books, 1965
Borrowed from the Jurong West Public Library. Book photos taken by me.

This book begins with a dire warning: “Take It Slowly: This Book is Dangerous!” And indeed it is. Sucker that I am, I love warnings like these. It totally reels me in. Once again, this book borrowed from the library and once owned by me as a child, takes me back to those early days when I would carefully and gleefully enunciate each of the words found in the page.

There is of course the sly, tongue-twisting fox and the unwitting and easily-exasperated Mr. Knox, sir. It begins quite innocently enough until it graduates to new tricks such as the one found below:


This Mr. Fox is truly flexible – juggler both in tongue, plus hands and feet!


Admittedly, this one stumped me a little bit when I was young with the sew and Sue and the new socks. 🙂


And who can forget the Gooey goo for chewy chewing. It’s all just a bunch of silly that’s absolutely perfect for a read-aloud to a young child!


Hah! I dare you to read this one!

I like how seemingly-patient Mr. Knox was until of course, he made his displeasure felt in the end, and quite definitively at that, to this smug, quite-oblivious Mr. Fox, sir. I loved rereading this aloud to my own 13 year old girl.

There’s A Wocket In My PocketIMG_8850

Written and Illustrated by: Dr. Seuss
Published byRandom House Children’s Books, 1974
Borrowed from the Jurong West Public Library. Book photos taken by me.

As I reread this book, I was actually reminded of Shel Silverstein and his creatures in Don’t Bump The Glump and Other FantasiesI can clearly see how Silverstein must have been inspired or influenced by Dr. Seuss to come up with such word play and beautiful nonsense.


Here, one stretches credulity even further with creatures such as a jertain or a zlock. I mean, really now? But then again as a child, who cares? So long as you know it sounds like something that you already are familiar with. Again, zone of proximal development in action!


I recall being absolutely creeped out by this image here as a child. What does that gigantic lump called a vug look like? I dread to even imagine.

Once again, Dr. Seuss never fails to amuse. The nonsense creatures/words could even prove to be an inspiring mentor-text to children to get them to come up with their own rhyming words that do not necessarily have to make sense.


I love how creativity is given free rein in Dr. Seuss’ books.

Currently Reading…

I have just finished reading The Sandman: Preludes and Nocturnes by Neil Gaiman late last night.


Since I already have all the ten volumes, I thought I might as well make some progress with the entire series! Will definitely feature this for our comics theme in September-October. Equal parts creepy, dark fantasia, fleeting enchantment, surreal, weird – everything that I love. I also resolve to finish A Song For Ella Grey by David Almond this week.


I am nearly halfway through and I had to physically stop myself from reading last night – it is that good. A combination of David Almond and Neil Gaiman before sleeping – imagine the dreams I’m having! 🙂

Myra is a Teacher Educator and a registered clinical psychologist based in Al Ain, United Arab Emirates. Prior to moving to the Middle East, she lived for eleven years in Singapore serving as a teacher educator. She has edited five books on rediscovering children’s literature in Asia (with a focus on the Philippines, Malaysia, India, China, Japan) as part of the proceedings for the Asian Festival of Children’s Content where she served as the Chair of the Programme Committee for the Asian Children’s Writers and Illustrators Conference from 2011 until 2019. While she is an academic by day, she is a closet poet and a book hunter at heart. When she is not reading or writing about books or planning her next reads, she is hoping desperately to smash that shuttlecock to smithereens because Badminton Is Life (still looking for badminton courts here at UAE - suggestions are most welcome).

10 comments on “[Monday Reading] Tongue Twisting Early Reader Books

  1. Is it a terrible thing to admit I’ve never read Neil Gaiman?


  2. Oh, I need to find that David Almond book! You made me laugh out loud with “zone of proximal development in action”. So funny. And the books are wonderful, of course.


  3. Ahhhh Fox in Socks!! I can’t read that without tripping up. Happy reading!


  4. kaymcgriff

    I love remembering the fun I had reading Dr. Seuss as a child and again with my own child. Thanks for taking me back with these favorites.


  5. You can’t praise Suess enough. The man was a bonafide genius in writing and illustrating. I mean, look at those images! 😀


  6. Yes! I love tongue twisters. I have the books Anna Banana and Six Sick Sheep by Joanna Cole that have lots of great tongue twisters too.


  7. I need to buy A Song For Ella Grey – Almond is such a talented writer. Thanks for the Seuss picks, too, Myra – fun!


  8. Thanks for showing the Dr. Seuss books, I need to pull some out again!


  9. Love the cover of Ella Grey. Haven’t heard a lot about it yet.


  10. I remember that I didn’t like Seuss’ Wocket book but Fox was good.


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