Children are intrigued with their scabs! The child who was crying hysterically a week ago over a bloody scrape may be now proudly displaying a new scab to friends. Scabs are one of life's little wonders for children, perhaps made more enticing because parents are constantly reminding them, "Don't pick that scab!"  All About Scabs, originally published in Japan, explains how scabs form and the healing function they serve. Scabs—big ones, little ones, anywhere from head to toe—are shown in simple illustrations of both boys and girls to help children learn about their own cuts and scrapes. What is a scab made of? Is it hardened blood? Can I eat it? What happens underneath a scab? For the child who cannot resist the temptation to pick off a scab, illustrations show how the skin looks underneath a scab both before and after it's picked off. "EEEYOW! It looks horrible!" the caption reads, and the picture may cure the curious little one.

The medical explanation of scabs is supported by counsel and review from a medical consultant. Although accurate and helpful, it may be too sophisticated for a child's level of understanding. Parents need to be aware that the terminology and content of these explanations appears to be for older children than the pictures suggest. However, the book does serve as a valuable tool for parents to explain All About Scabs according to their child's comprehension level.

Valerie Kordowski is a reviewer with her own curious son who occasionally gets scabs.

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