'Please Say Please!'
'Don't Slurp Your Soup!'
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[JULY 28, 2004]
Say Please! A Penguin's Guide to Manners," by Margery Cuyler, illustrated by
Will Hillenbrand, Scholastic Press, 29 pages, ages 2-6
"Don't Slurp Your Soup! A First Guide to Letter Writing, E-mail Etiquette, and
Other Everyday Manners," by Lynne Gibbs, illustrated by John Eastwood,
McGraw-Hill Children's Publishing, 24 pages, ages 6-9
Good manners are a lost art in today's
world, right? Are you unsure how to introduce the idea of table
manners to your toddler? Does your grade school child know how to
introduce friends properly or write a party invitation? These two
books could help your children in any of these situations.
"Please Say Please!" is the story of
animal friends invited to Penguin's house for dinner. Hippo,
giraffe, monkey and elephant are just a few of the diners.
Penguin's guests learn proper etiquette
with simple examples and the repetition that toddlers love. This
book explores situations that range from greeting Penguin at the
door, washing before the meal and being served food they don't like
to talking with a full mouth, burping and asking to be excused from
The simple illustrations show the
animal committing the faux pas, with the question "Is that right?"
on each page. Turn the page and read, "No, that's wrong," followed
by the correct example. Toddlers will love the repetition and will
probably join you in the fun after a few pages.
Of course the dinner ends with the
animal friends showing their good manners with a "Thanks for dinner.
We had a great time!" at Penguin's door.
I'm certain that Penguin will invite
his friends back for another visit, because they have learned such
good manners for the dinner table. Your toddler may (or may not)
learn something about table manners too but will certainly enjoy
hearing about Penguin's friends.
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Early grade-schoolers will be dealing
with more than just table manners in their daily lives. "Don't Slurp
Your Soup!" is set up in chapter style, but each category takes only
two pages to cover the subject so it doesn't overload with "rules."
Starting with a general explanation of
what good manners are and the benefits of using them, "Don't Slurp
Your Soup!" discusses introducing friends, being a good sport and
using party manners (whether giving or attending a party). The
guidelines are short and to the point, with a wrap-up box for each
category listing the "Ultimate NO-NOs" that no kid would want to be
The book also includes discussion on
the sometimes overlooked art of letter writing, as well as etiquette
on kids' newest crazes of e-mailing and cell phone usage. Of course
each page has colorful illustrations of the specified dos and don'ts
to reinforce the text. Lest you think that grade-schoolers are past
learning anything about table manners, there is a page illustrating
what to do about sticky fingers, napkins and the dreaded utensil
"Don't Slurp Your Soup!" wraps up with
this wisdom: "No matter how bright or funny you are, if you do not
know how to behave properly, most people will remember your bad
and more can be found in the Youth Services Department of Lincoln
Public Library. Visit us at 725 Pekin St. or call (217) 732-5732.
Public Library District]