Ninja training begins early, but before any power moves are taught, young ones must first learn to control their emotions—practical advice for any 3-year-old.
The morning starts swiftly, as families drop down from nothing but thin air—an appropriate entrance for ninjas. The children bow, and all seems well, until “KABOOM! KAPOW!” Little feet and fists kick up clouds of dust as the ninjas push and pull and fight over toys. Master claps his hands and yells, “QUIET!” He pleads, “It is time for you to all reflect / On honor, kindness, and respect.” (Delightfully, Master sounds an awful lot like Miss Clavell.) Order is restored…until the lunch gong is rung. “KABOOM! KAPOW!” Udon goes flying. Chaos ensues yet again at storytime. The weary Master slumps in defeat. But he may have imparted more wisdom than he thought, as suddenly, one little ninja steps up to stop the riot. Tougas’ black-clad tots are alert and ready to pounce—and when they do, it’s a flurry of action. The rhyming text does well to keep up. Added details of one poor, masked teddy bear’s increasingly mangled state and a particularly gassy ninja are fun to spot.
Day care is full of covert purposes, ninja or not; this rollicking read-aloud will fit right in. (Picture book. 3-6)