Too Noisy by Malachy Doyle


“Oh,  will you ever shush,” cried Sam,

the middle one, the quiet one,

the Bungle full of dreams.”

There isn’t room to think round here,

all boom and bash and wallop.”

Too Noisy! by Malachy Doyle takes you on a journey into the world of sounds.There are big loud sounds and I love the way  sounds are illustrated by flat colourful speech bubbles.  Ed Vere illustrations perfectly captures the spirit of this very lively family.

A world filled with sounds is exiting but it can also be tiring and Sam wants some peace and quiet. So he walks into the woods where there are small sounds – small pastel coloured speech bubbles are swirling around among the tree. Mice , rabbits and bird fill the woods with their kind of sounds and Sam loves the peaceful woods.


Too Noisy! has a wonderful rhythm filled with sentences  like “And so he upped and so he offed and so he wandered to the woods.” and . . .” Aha!” he sighed, “that’s better,”as he looked around at clouds and trees and greens and blues and water.”

Malachy’s lyrical flair transforms this book into a magical dreamy journey filled with musical sounds. This is a book that children wants to hear over and over again and the literary quality makes you as a parent enjoy reading, especially if you are not too fond of formal rhyme.

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This book is a great starting point for think diving into the world of sounds.

  • Think about ways of making noises, for example, using your body, or a pan. . .
  • Can you combine activities to make sounds? Like wearing noisy shoes or painting with noisy pencils (No time for Flashcards has a great activity)
  • Make an instrument – this board on Pinterest is filled with inspiration.
  • Think about silence and peace
  • Is it ever really quiet?
  • Can you be a sound detective and discover who or what makes a certain sound?
  • Can you hear small sounds better if you close your eyes?
  • Are there different sounds in the evening?
  • What familiar sounds makes you like Sam in the book feel welcome and at home?
  • And can you make a Water drop sound with your mouth? We definitely need to practice on this;-)

Also I like the way this books ends, which makes children realise that the world is not an either or world. We can both love and embrace sounds and enjoy Five Minutes’ Peace.

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