Book Inspired Activities, Book Reviews

Poo in the Zoo Book Review + Claire’s Glowing Poo Slime

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Have you heard of Poo in the Zoo?

One of the many books we love from British Author Steve Smallman is called Poo in the Zoo. With its lyrical verse and animal scat imagery, Poo in the Zoo has ignited the joy of reading poetry and learning about animals in my kids! You and your kids will be laughing for joy like we did, as they read about Bob McGrew, the head keeper at the Zoo, who loves his job, but would trade anything to not have to clean up all the Poo! Find our Author Spotlight at the end of this post, plus our Super Fun Inspired Glowing Poo Slime Tutorial YouTube video!

One day, while Bob is busy cleaning up all sorts of poo, from all the animals in the Zoo, he finally makes it to the iguana’s cage. The iguana soon finds his moment to escape his enclosure and runs off on an adventure all his own! He realizes how hungry he is, makes it to the food court, and finds the most delicious food to eat. All the kids are amazed at all the food this little iguana can pack away.

But, he is not able to stop eating and eventually finds some fireflies, the perfect ‘light’ meal to end his gluttonous journey. Then, his tummy starts to make the most outrageous sounds, and he soon plops a poo that glows! It scares him so much, that he runs off back to his home.

Bob soon notices something incredibly eye-catching… something so strange, that he thinks that it must have come from outer space! Soon, it catches the eye of all the town, and they all flocked to check out the glowing poo, and so did a unique poo collector who owns none other than a poo museum on wheels!

Hector Glue is his name, and he introduces Bob to his amazing collection of Poo, with shelves with jar after jar of rare and amazing animal poo. From Yeti, and dragon poo, to unicorn and Dino poo! All the sizes and shapes of poo you can imagine. And boy, did he want to buy Bob’s glowing poo.

In the end, Bob ends up with a job that’s a whole lot easier, after selling that glowing poo and buying a robot pooper scooper!

My kids absolutely love this book, filled with rhymes, animals, and the most unique way of thinking about Poo! It has to lead to us making Glowing Poo Slime, and storing them in Jam Jars, creating our own Poo Slime Collection, just like Hector Glue!

Buy this book today!

Claire’s Glowing Poo Slime Recipe

Ingredients Needed:

Check out the Video Tutorial by Claire on how to make your own fabulous Glowing Poo Slime with your kids:

Method for making Glowing Poo Slime with your kids:

  1. In a small bowl, pour out all your contents of glow in the dark glitter glue, and add in 1 tsp of baking soda, and mix until combined.
  2. Then add in your eye contact solution, bit by bit, mixing as you go.
  3. Claire’s tip: Add a bit of contact solution to your hands and fingers before handling your slime at the beginning, this will help the slime not stick to your hands at all. If it does stick, add a bit more eye solution, and knead, knead, knead.
  4. Once your Slime has formed, play away! Get lots of light to your slime, and check it out in the dark, it does glow!

Find this book and more from Steve Smallman on Amazon today!

And from his funny and brilliant “Fairy Tales Gone Wrong Series”

Steve retells common Fairy tales and teaches kids valuable lessons at the same time!


Plus more books listed here on his website!

Now Let me introduce you to Author + Illustrator, Steve Smallman!

I have recently sat down with Steve Smallman, to chat about life, and what inspires him the most with his writing, and illustrating.

Steve Smallman was born in the market town of Wisbech, in Cambridgeshire, United Kingdom, and now lives in Burton Upon Trent, Staffordshire, UK. He has been married and has 4 children, who are all grown up now, and they enjoy fun times with their seven adorable, energetic and hilarious grandchildren, all of which inspire and inform all of his writing.

He went to school is Wishbech, and says that his career as an illustrator began mostly in educational publishing, and he enjoyed that for 20 years and decided to give writing one a try. “I sent the manuscript of my first book to three different publishers and … they ALL wanted to publish it!” He now writes picture books for children from toddler age to 7/8, but says that ‘my rhyming texts fo down very well with older children too!’

“I love that you can use your imagination to create characters and places that never existed before! You can make up a story that can be exciting, reassuring, moving or plain bonkers and it’s wonderful to know that it can be shared by children all over the world!” – Steve Smallman

Steve says that he has always loved to draw and that he ‘used to spend hours as a child copying cartoons from comic books or pictures of animals from encyclopedias’. He remembers when he was about 10, and he was painting a picture of a man fishing and being so engrossed in it that he didn’t notice that the house was on fire! Holy cow, can you imagine? He goes on say, that ‘at one point I thought that I might like to be zookeeper so that I could work with the animals all day and draw them on my lunch break.’ When he was 17, his careers teacher at school suggested that he might like to be an artist instead and that he could still draw and paint the animals, but that he wouldn’t have to shovel any poo!

‘It was a moment of revelation to me. It had never occurred to me before that you could get paid for something that you did as a hobby!” – Steve Smallman

Steve continues to do just that, and he shares that he is working on a sequel to “The Lamb Who Came for Dinner”, which is called, “The Wolves who Came for Dinner”. This book is destined to be published next Spring. I am looking forward to reading both books, as my children absolutely love sequels, and love reading Steve’s rhyming stories!


“I’ve wanted to write this sequel for some time as I love the characters so much and I wanted to see what happened to them next!” ~ Steve Smallman

What his creative process looks like

With writing a book, he shared that ‘firstly, I need an idea! When I’ve got a basic premise for the story, or even just a promising character, I start doing character sketches. I do this even if I’m not going to illustrate the book, as it really helps me fix the characters in my mind.” He then jots down plot ideas and draws them too. He will ‘write a synopsis to get a rough idea of how the story will go’ and then he tries to ‘break the story plot into 12 sections’ which he said is the number of double-page spreads in a standard 32-page picture book! ‘I write a first draft of the story’ Steve goes on to say that ‘after a bit of reflection and judicious tweaking’ he will send them off to his publisher. If the publisher likes it he will refine the text ‘with the help of their picture book editor’ until they get the finalized text. They then send this to the illustrator who ‘works with the designers and art editors and with a few minor adjustments, the finished work is sent off to be proofed’.  The final step makes sense to me, as the proofs are checked, and if needed ‘corrected and amended, and used at Book Fairs to sell foreign edition rights for other countries.’ After about one year after that, ‘the book is finally published!’

Steve shares more juicy insight and advice for the budding writer or artist:

Keep a notebook and write down things you see or hear or read about that you find interesting. Jot down ideas, even if they are not fully formed and if you can, draw sketches too! You can end up creating a sort of ‘Mood board’ which will be a good starting point for some serious (or not so serious in my case!) story writing! Read what you’ve written out loud and you’ll know if it flows or stutters along and change stuff that just isn’t working. Work to make your story the best it can be! “

 Some of Steve’s Hobbies include mural painting, and walking his two dogs, in the beautiful English countryside.

Stanely and Alfie, Steve’s Dogs

He enjoys painting beautiful murals in schools, usually after a school visit with a drawing workshop. He always loves to include the children’s drawings in the final artwork.

“I started painting murals by accident. A teacher misinterpreted my school visit flyer and said, “Oh, I see that you paint murals too.” I said “Er…yes!” And now I’ve done over 50.”

Find more from Steve on his Website, and on twitter.

Steve Smallman is also spotlighted in our Build Your Masterpiece Class in the Adventures in England, which is due to be released this Spring on our Membership Site!

“The plan is wonderful. I think it’s a fun and active way to learn, not only by reading or listening but also by making things with your own hands. It’s also good because kids can make their own connections between artists and different countries in Europe.” ~ Sol Felpeto, Multicultural Artist, Madrid, Spain

Buy Unit 1, Adventures in Italy in our Shop NOW!

“By coming together as a family, to learn about Art, Artists, European countries, as well as cooking, you are able to make lasting impressions which ignite a creative way of looking at the world!” ~Alexandra Derry

Thank you so much for reading this book review and our inspired glowing poo slime today!

Be sure to be following us on Instagram, for your chance to win this book. This Giveaway is now running, from January 31 to February 3rd, 2019. Enter to Win here!!

Til next time,

Breathe deeply and enjoy building your masterpiece, with scissors and glue and poo slime too!




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