Can Books Teach Manners?
The "Mom's Choice" book this past week was May I Please Have a Cookie by Jennifer Morris. This is, of course, a picture book. It doesn't have any pictures of tractors, but it has a great message. The characters are friendly alligators so that adds another cute dimension to the book. Anyway, the story begins with the mother alligator making some delicious looking cookies. Alfie, the little boy alligator, really wants to have one. His mom, wanting to teach a lesson, asks if he can find a better way to get a cookie. The book details the different stunts that Alfie tries that really don't work. In the end, Alfie asks him mom for a cookie very nicely with a please and he gets his cookie. So, this was a nice book about using the word please when requesting something.
Just the fact that it is a nice book was not the only reason that it was my choice of the week. What happened a few days later made my decision for me. Out of the blue, my son climbed on a chair and pointed to one of his toys that we put up high to keep it out of his sister's reach. He looked at us and pointed again and said "Toy, please" We were dumbfounded. This was the first time he had used "please." Hmm...Did he learn this word from this book? Maybe. Maybe not. But it was sure nice to hear him say it. And we did get his toy down for him since he asked so nicely.