Manners Mash-Up; A Book Review

Do you have trouble with nose pickers in your classroom?  How about yellers, screaming out across the room? Or “gasp” the furniture surfer?   If so, curb their behavior with Manner’s Mash-Up, an illustrated goofy guide to good behavior.  Join 14 rising and established illustrators who in two page spreads teach students how to behave with kid enticing illustrations that portray characters demonstrating less than stellar manners. My favorite part has to be the subtle threat implied in Dan Santat’s “At the Theater” spread where the opera singer’s spear is pointed right at the kid playing his video game!  It reminds of all the times I have seen people talking on their cell phones when checking out or people texting whilst in conversation with a live human being in front of them.  I want to just say to the ignorants, quoting Stephanie Tanner, “How Rude.”

Although this book is sure to delight, I do have one concern.  Each manner is presented in the negative rather than the positive, so kids might focus more on the bad manner than the good manner.  Nevertheless, it will stimulate creative classroom or family conversation on what exactly it means to be polite or why we have etiquette rules anyway? Good for ages 2-8.

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