Animal Explorers and Experts

We love a bit of book post here at RR HQ. But it warms my heart when books arrive that are destined to be friends! I love a good book pairing and when these books arrived, I knew they’d go well together. Let me introduce to you Wilfred and Olbert’s Wild Chase and two fabulous compendiums from Franklin Watts:

First, let’s meet friends, Wilfred and Olbert. This exciting and different format has been written and illustrated by Lomp. We’re introduced to the stars of the show, two quirky animal explorers, on the day they spot a strange creature. Could it be an undiscovered species? Already the language makes me want to make links with science learning.

There is so much to discover on each page. Young readers’ eyes will skip around the page, making discoveries from the get go. The pathways lead you through the book and the puzzles, as W and O try to catch the butterfly.

Each double page spread, in a new habitat, is a ready-made story map to follow. It could easily be used to inspire writing, especially to include dialogue. There are lots of details to add, too. It really is fun to follow Wilfred’s and Olbert’s different routes, including shortcuts and problems!

In each habitat, W and O encounter and pass by so many interesting creatures, all labelled correctly. Great prompts for writing, maybe diary entries, narratives or descriptions, encouraging the use of proper nouns. Also a start point for further reading and finding out about.

The quest to be first to discover this species is varied and long. There are so many puzzles and quirks along the way. I can really see this book capturing readers, who as yet may be reluctant. They may not realise they are reading and just enjoy the puzzles.

Wilfred and Olbert do catch the creature, but it is left to the reader to discover the name.


This book would be a wonderful invite to young readers to become Natural History Explorers, too. As suggested before, there are many creatures referenced that children could find out more about. Or they could invent and describe their own undiscovered species. Which leads us nicely onto our non-fiction books.

I just love these books. They are so inviting. We have had lots of fun finding out about creatures we know and those we don’t, here at RR HQ. The illustrations are wonderful, and have the air of animal explorer’s notebook about them. They could even have been done by Wilfred and Olbert! The information is in nice, bite-sized chunks, but tonnes is packed in.

These compendiums are the perfect companion for W and O. Children could select a creature, or invent a creature from/for the Record Breakers Compendium. They could create a W and O adventure based on this creature, or a new page for the compendium. Lots of potential for reading and writing.

Fab selection of books for animal explorers and experts! Enjoy!



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