Thursday, 22 November 2012

The Friendliest Ballerina by Timothy Knapman and Jimothy Oliver (QED / Quarto Publishing)

QED has a rather impressive range of books that are designed to teach children about a subject very dear to my heart, good manners. Well not just manners but generally being a bit nicer to everyone. Yep even that kid over there who can't take his finger out of his nose. The "Marvellous Manners" range centres around the same notions of pastoral care that a lot of schools are embracing wholeheartedly, as a means of ensuring that children don't bully, are polite, and generally behave better at school (and hopefully at home).

So in "The Friendliest Ballerina" we learn how two new children joining a ballet class are taken under the wing of the star ballerina.

Once she was a bit of a diva, ignored those in her class and in her shows because she was the star and she was the centre of attention. But after the show, when other children started to avoid her, she began to wonder why she felt so lonely.

Helping others, making friends and showing the new children the ropes helped her understand that being a bit nicer to others would mean they'd be a bit nicer to you.

Other titles in the range are:

Cowboys can be kind

The pirate who said please

Princesses love to share

All available through the QED Website

Charlotte's best bit: The new children giving the star ballerina a hug at the end of the performance.

Daddy's favourite bit: A great way of introducing good manners and polite behaviour to children through easily identifiable (if a little cliched) characters. Well written and nicely illustrated.