What’s Up Top

This is the most perfect storytime book ever, I shared it with a group of preschoolers the other day and they were in fits of laughter and trying very hard to guess what might have been on top of the ladder.  We then proceeded to do a craft of what we thought was up top and there were some wonderful creations.



What’s Up Top by Marc Martin
Published by Penguin Random House
Date: 28 August 2017
R.R.P: $24.99




So what is up top? That is what we are left wondering when we get to the end of the book, but throughout the story the children’s imagination is fed and inspired. From pages with almost nothing on them, to busy pages with baboons and giraffes our goal is to think about what is on top of the cheeky ladder.

The book starts out with simple ideas which get the children thinking about What’s Up Top, as the pages progress the ideas become whimsical, something like you would see in a Dr Seuss book. At this point the children began finding the ideas quite funny and wanted to tell me their stories.

What about a hotel that looks like a shell, that’s run by a snail with the name of Miguel?


This book can be used in many ways which makes it a good read for different age groups.  Using it with toddlers you can talk about the different animals on the pages and get them to make noises with you.  For the 3-5 year old, additional to reading to them, involving them in the story by using statements such as ‘Do you think it really is a frog on a log on top?’ Often resulting in a Nooooooo or Yesssssss on the top of their lungs.  For school aged children this book would be great read to a class to inspire their own imaginative stories.  With books there are so many possibilities and this is one of the best to get the imagination rolling.


The twist at the end of the book is very funny and unexpected, in fact the children and I loved that it surprised us all.

The illustrations by Marc Martin are almost all pastel shades, with the odd dark colour which is usually making a statement such as a big whale. Simplicity seems to be the key with the book and because of the very solid and engaging story. I think this is a must for all book shelves and definitely for storytimes where one child’s laughter will get the whole group laughing.

These are just 4 of the creations that came from the imaginations of the preschool group I took last week. I love that they didn’t do a typical ladder and that they decided how they wanted to look.  This is what they think is on top of their ladder and I love that they used their choices were different from what is in the book.

I would love to hear from you and if you have read the book what you or your child think of it.  The words Possibilities and inspiring are what come out of it for me but what about you?

Thank you to Penguin Books Australia for giving me the opportunity to read and review this book

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