John Buttino and Amanda Wolfley are a team working on developing a series of books that stimulate and encourage child development through fun, challenging activities that children of different ages can enjoy. This series offers two titles: Dinosaur Discovery and Fun Activity Book and Flowers and Plants Discovery and Fun Activity Book. Both offer a strong design with easy-to-color and appealing pictures and activities on every page.
John Buttino serves as the artist and the designer, while Amanda Wolfley writes this series. The authors bring to them all their expertise from years in the advertising and design industries, as well as the work they have done in book publishing. In addition, each of the team members has his or her children, who have taught them the best way to reach this young audience. Thanks to their experiences as parents, John and Amanda decided to join forces to create educational materials that are appealing and fun.
Flowers and Plants Discovery and Fun Activity Book offers lovely drawings of plants and flowers, accompanied by fun and educational activities that stay with the theme. The book teaches kids the basics of horticulture and simple math, expands their vocabulary related to plants, and more. It includes a variety of activities, like word searches, mazes, handwriting exercises, and many other types to make each page feel new and fresh.
Dinosaur Discovery and Fun Activity Book offers an equally challenging set of puzzles and activities but with a dinosaur theme. There are 92 pages of original illustrations to be colored and a lot of vocabulary to be learned. In addition to dinosaur-specific words and activities, the book helps kids develop their drawing skills and their handwriting, practice basic math, and do a variety of tasks, like connecting the dots and, of course, coloring. This is a perfect gift for an aspiring little paleontologist!
Both books are meant for kids of ages 3 and up and can be enjoyed by kids without the need for a lot of parental involvement. The tasks offer easy-to-understand projects and educational experiences that are fun and motivate the kids to keep going and keep working on developing different skills. The workbooks were made with the intention of making learning feel fun and exciting, and they achieve this through a combination of varied tasks, interesting and attractive themes, and appealing art that is easy to color and appreciate.
Kids are sure to love these workbooks, and they make for a great gift for children with a fondness for either theme. They succeed at creating fun educational experiences over the course of 92 pages that are full of interesting tasks and nice art.
Stay tuned for more projects from the dynamic duo of John Buttino and Amanda Wolfley, who are likely to continue their educational series with many new titles that offer a combination of learning activities, fun coloring, and topics to stimulate interest and creativity.
We had the pleasure of interviewing John Buttino and Amanda Wolfley. Here are excerpts from the interview.
Hi, Great to have you with us today! Please share with our readers the inspiration behind the books.
We share a similar history of varied experiences in the advertising and design world, ranging from advertising, books and publication, entertainment, and beyond. We also share the experience of each having young children of our own. Swapping stories about them is what sparked the creation of our partnership, creating fun educational materials.
Please tell us more about your journey.
We each came to a realization that so much is expected of young kids, starting from as early as 2 or 3 years old. It was different when we were kids. We didn’t begin to need to learn to write until we were 6 or 7. Now our respective four-year-olds are expected to write words and master addition and subtraction. We noticed the materials were what we considered to be random or mismatched. Some daycares seem to use mismatched materials that were inconsistent. Some of the books we were getting for them also seemed in need of refinement.
Observations became notes about how we would prefer to see them learn. The notes became a kind of mission statement that defined our partnership. It was to create learning materials for children that felt logical and consistent for both the child and parent (guardian/teacher) and would be something that could be performed independently by the child or practiced together in an easy-to-understand and fun way.
Please share more about your books, Dinosaur Discovery and Fun Activity Book and Flowers and Plants Discovery and Fun Activity Book.
Dinosaur Discovery and Fun Activity Book and Flowers and Plants Discovery and Fun Activity Book focus on having fun learning about a subject with a lot of pictures to color and accompanying words that grow vocabulary and practice of letterforms. They also have challenging puzzles, word searches, mazes, and drawing exercises, as well as sections for parents (guardian/teacher) to read from and discuss.
Learn To Write Letters and Learn To Write Workbook are fundamental letter writing, recognition, and practice books.
We are currently creating and developing more subjects such as music, transportation, and travel for future books. We also plan to create storybooks with activities that use the same consistent design language, so more avenues open up for learning as a child grows up.
What are the strategies that helped you become successful in your journey?
Our first challenge was to develop a consistent design language that existed throughout each book. It had to be flexible across many genres and easy to use and understand. Learn To Write Letters and Learn To Write Workbook are about practicing fundamentals and the exercises are designed to assist and reinforce letter forms for beginners. These serve as an introduction to writing. That foundation enabled us to expand into interesting subjects using the same design language but more advanced with Dinosaur Discovery and Fun Activity Book and Flowers and Plants Discovery and Fun Activity Book.
We decided to employ a kind of “Marvel Method” when creating the books. The “Marvel Method” was how Marvel Comics created their monthly titles; the writer and artist would concept the story basics, the artist would draw the story, and the writer would then fill in the pictures with dialogue and story.
We work out the basic concept, then John designs and illustrates while Amanda refines lessons and text. We create the books over time until we are satisfied that what we create will be fun and educational. If it’s what we would want to do with our children or think our children would connect with what we create – then that concept makes it into the book! We are having a lot of fun making these and don’t plan to stop. We hope to continue as our kids grow and grow the series with them.
Any message for our readers?
Give these books a try! Let us know what you think!
Fantastic! So tell us, how can people find out more about you?
The books are available on Amazon; just search for Amanda Wolfley! John has a design shop called Studio 85 Design on Instagram @studio85design. That is where most of the social content is shared.
Thank you so much for giving us your precious time! We wish you all the best for your journey ahead!
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