PJ Storytime: Manners

I’m usually not one to harp on manners or go on rants about how disrespectful kids these day are. However,  some really funny new picture books on manners came out this year and I couldn’t help myself. These early years are when children develop social skills and some gently encouragement to be polite never hurt.


We Read:

Rude Cakes by Rowboat Watkins

This book didn’t get the laughs I was expecting. I found it hysterical, and I wonder if it would be better for a one-on-one reading where the adult and child could really explore all that is going on in the drawings.

Please, Mr. Panda by Steve Antony

The kids LOVED this one. They were more involved int he telling, as I asked them each time if they thought the animal would get a doughnut. THey cought on quick to logic of the book (the animals didn’t say please) and all found Mr. Panda’s dead-pan reaction funny.

Pardon, Me! by Daniel Miyares

I introduced the phase “Pardon me” before reading and asked if anyone knew when or why we say it. The older kids in the room jumped right in with their answers, “When you burp!” followed immediately by “Or FART!” Good times 🙂 My group loved that the bird got eaten in the end, but be warned if you have  a more sensitive group.

Another Option:

Thank You, Bear by Greg Foley
This is such a sweet story and I considered sharing it, but I’ve been drawing a larger crowd during the summer and it’s a smaller book.

We Sang:

Hello and How Are You from Wiggleworms Love You by The Old Town School of Folk Music

We sang along with the CD for this one since I can’t speak French. I’m considering doing it a capella next time and leavign the French verse out. They are something very different that “Hello and How are you” which bugs me. The Spanish verse is a direct translation and I can sing in Spanish.

Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear (Manners Version)

I love the versatility of this song. It’s familiar enough that the kids catch on quick.

Teddy bear, teddy bear
Turn around.
Teddy bear, Teddy bear
Touch the ground.
Teddy bear, Teddy bear
touch your knees.
Teddy bear, Teddy bear
always say, “Please!”

Teddy bear, teddy bear
Turn around.
Teddy bear, Teddy bear
Touch the ground.
Teddy bear, Teddy bear
say, “Thank You!.
Teddy bear, Teddy bear
That will do!

Five Little Monkeys Swinging from a Tree

Valuable lesson about teasing and a nice tie-in to Pardon Me!

Shake Hands With Friends

I sang an a capella version of Ella Jenkins’ song and kept repeating the simple verse, “Shake hands with friends, it’s time to go,” until all of the kids had a chance to shake hands with each other.

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