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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great for reading confidence.
My 5 yr old son went to school knowing his alphabet, and some 2-3 letter words. They do reading at school, and encourage reading at home too, but my boy lacks confidence and therefore was reluctant to read.
This book has changed that. Each story (there are 12) is 5-7 pages long, with simple 2/3/4 letter words on each page. Even if he doesn't know the word, he can...
Published 20 months ago by MrsV

versus
1 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not the best early reading book
The words are repetitive and disengagingl. Page 1: "I am Top Cat." Page 2: "Am I Top Cat?" Page 3: "I am. I am." Repeat... :-/
Published 13 months ago by Jamie Brayshaw


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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great for reading confidence., 1 July 2013
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This review is from: Oxford Reading Tree Songbirds: Level 1+: Top Cat and Other Stories (Paperback)
My 5 yr old son went to school knowing his alphabet, and some 2-3 letter words. They do reading at school, and encourage reading at home too, but my boy lacks confidence and therefore was reluctant to read.
This book has changed that. Each story (there are 12) is 5-7 pages long, with simple 2/3/4 letter words on each page. Even if he doesn't know the word, he can "sound it out" and gain confidence when it's repeated. He now wants to read ME a bedtime story each night, which is great to see/hear, and it's because the simplicity of this book has helped him grow in confidence.
If you have a reluctant or early reader, I cannot recommend this book highly enough. And even if your reader is confident, it's great to read together.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book for easy phonics, 11 Feb. 2013
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This review is from: Oxford Reading Tree Songbirds: Level 1+: Top Cat and Other Stories (Paperback)
We already have the Biff, Chip and Kipper read at home set but I read about Songbirds on the Oxford Reading Tree wesite. They are designed to be almost entirely decodable phonics - so that as soon as children have learnt the basic sounds, they could work out these stories, unlike many early learner books which still have 'tricky' words that can't be sounded out (like 'the').

There are twelve short stories in this collection, each starts with a page of the included sounds, and any words that the child may find harder to blend. There is a mixture of characters some of which are repeated, like Top Cat and Bob Bug, but it offers a bit more variety than Biff, Chip and Kipper. There's a nice element of humour with the stories too, and the pictures complement the words beautifully.

My 5 year old daughter (a non reader before starting school in September) sat down with this book as soon as it arrived and worked through all of the stories, refusing to put it down! She does like reading but quite often comments that some of her books from school are 'boring'. So I'm delighted at her interest in these ones, and I'm off to order Stage 2!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great for beginners, 19 Sept. 2013
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This review is from: Oxford Reading Tree Songbirds: Level 1+: Top Cat and Other Stories (Paperback)
purchased for my son who has just started school. great short stories, easy for them to follow and he has started to try to read them himself. All in all very impressed!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars good, 7 Jun. 2013
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This review is from: Oxford Reading Tree Songbirds: Level 1+: Top Cat and Other Stories (Paperback)
nice easy reading for my 5 (almost 6 year old) lots of stories to choose from and short words 'cat' 'dog' etc
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book!, 27 Mar. 2013
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This review is from: Oxford Reading Tree Songbirds: Level 1+: Top Cat and Other Stories (Paperback)
I really like this book and best of all - my students love the stories and the pictures. It teaches them phonics without thinking! I like Julia Donaldson too!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Incredible Developmental Aid, 4 April 2014
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This review is from: Oxford Reading Tree Songbirds: Level 1+: Top Cat and Other Stories (Paperback)
I bought this for my 5-year-old son to arrive in February of his junior infants year. By this stage he had covered the phonetics to allow him to read this book. The great boon was how well it increased his reading skills. By the end of the second run through he was really reading correctly at a great pace. The art work is of a great standard and are a superb compliment to the simple but elegant stories. It is now April and after devouring both Stage 2 follow up books he is marching through his Stage 3 book with ease. It is a much cherished part of our bedtime routine and the confidence it has given both he and I is unparalleled. Essential for your child's first year of school.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant, 17 Feb. 2014
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Kel Had "KFH" (Shropshire, England, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Oxford Reading Tree Songbirds: Level 1+: Top Cat and Other Stories (Paperback)
Bought this a few days ago as my 4 year old has developed a sudden interest in reading. He already had phonics knowledge. The book has been an excellent introduction to reading, is just at the right level so he hasn't become frustrated with it. It has given him a confidence boost as it's the first book he can read himself all the way through. He understands the stories and finds them amusing. He picks it up to read himself as he enjoys the stories and the pictures. He has almost read each story. I wish there was another of these books at this level but now going to buy one the next level up to see how he gets on with it.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Lovely start when learning to read, 19 Dec. 2013
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Melissa Addey "Melissa" (London, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Oxford Reading Tree Songbirds: Level 1+: Top Cat and Other Stories (Paperback)
Very simple easy stories for new readers. I grew up with the Gay Way (now New Way!) reading series but they seem hard to get hold of nowadays so these seemed like a good idea. The words used are almost all easy ones that 'make sense' when sounded out (cat, dog, etc.) rather than using the more complex phonic sounds so perfect for little kids who have just got to grips with the alphabet and its sounds, not quite onto phonics. Am sure they work very well for phonics readers as well , of course. Nice illustrations and quite funny stories.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent., 11 Jan. 2013
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This review is from: Oxford Reading Tree Songbirds: Level 1+: Top Cat and Other Stories (Paperback)
My 6-year-old boy, who hasn't learned to read yet, listened to me read this book once. He now reads it cover-to-cover repeatedly by himself. We have moved on to 'The Ox and the Yak' and 'The Odd Pet". As a parent I thoroughly enjoy the illustrations and the stories. I should've known when my kids were hooked on 'The Snail and the Whale' and 'The Gruffalo' that they would love these books too. It was well worth it to have them shipped to Canada.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great Book., 7 July 2014
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This review is from: Oxford Reading Tree Songbirds: Level 1+: Top Cat and Other Stories (Paperback)
This book is brilliant for children that are just beginning to read. It has 12 short stories with 4-6 words on each page, colourful pictures that will make your child ask "what are they doing?" Like my son did. It also has full stops and question marks which are great for teaching your child how to be a good all round reader. I would recommend these books and I will be buying more for my son. Happy Reading :-)
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Oxford Reading Tree Songbirds: Level 1+: Top Cat and Other Stories
Oxford Reading Tree Songbirds: Level 1+: Top Cat and Other Stories by Julia Donaldson (Paperback - 5 Jan. 2012)
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