Nicole. L Steevens (text), Olivia Godbee (illus.), Tom Brown, Sit Down!, Little Steps Publishing, 1 Dec 2016, 32pp, $24.95 (hbk) ISBN: 9781925545067
Told in rhyme, this is a simple story about an over-active boy who doesn’t like to sit still. The author has a Masters in Special Education and has created a hyperactive character that might equally engage children in mainstream learning or special education environments. Certainly, this story could work well in early childhood settings to create empathy for children who (perhaps for developmental reasons) simply can’t sit still.
The layout is clean and the illustrations colourful and funny in parts – Tom Brown is upended by a tip-up truck and hangs out in the overhead luggage compartment of a train.
The conclusion in which Tom Brown jumps out of a classroom window and lands on a tree branch is child-focused and likely to appeal to the target audience. Also, with the concluding line:
Perhaps tomorrow, Tom Brown will sit down
there is a reassuring acknowledgement that learning to sit still might be a work-in-progress for some.
Reviewed by Heather Gallagher