Two clinical child psychologists reinterpret a dozen childhood minirebellions as requests for information on topics from bathing and bedwetting to the titular veggies.
Taking a utilitarian tone from the outset, this discussion guide opens with general instructions for adult book-sharers (“Step 3: Direct the child’s attention to the illustration…”), then goes on to present 12 common domestic scenarios. Each of these features a large cartoon illustration, a short written narrative, three leading discussion questions (“How do you think Ibrahim feels about brushing his teeth?”), and further advice to parents. None of the common queries here are on the level of “Where did I come from?” but some, such as “Why can’t I wet the bed?” or “Why can’t I have some of your wine?” will likely require actions or responses that are beyond the scope of this cut-and-dried format (“Because I said so!” is not an offered option). The five children are racially diverse, but Yuki’s and her mom’s exaggeratedly slanted eyes and yellow skin come dangerously close to stereotype. For the already uninformed query “Why do I have to wear sunscreen when it’s sunny?” light-skinned Angus on the beach turns a particularly alarming shade of red.
Simplistic at best, misleading at worst, and addressed mostly to grown-ups, notwithstanding the picture-book format. (select print and web resources) (Informational picture book. 3-8)