3 out of 4 stars
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Billy Bear Cub: The Well Mannered Cub is a children’s book by author Chad Leisse that introduces the concept of courteous manners to young readers. The story is told in a sequence of rhymes and includes colorful illustrations. Additionally, the book uses examples of positive reinforcement as a teaching tool.
Billy Bear is just a nub of a cub when his mother begins to teach him about manners. She shows him how he can earn stars on a chalkboard when he follows a few simple rules at home or during family outings. From breakfast to bedtime, we follow Billy's day as he learns age-appropriate manners for behavior in the car, during a shopping trip, and when meeting new people. Reminders about rules regarding outdoor play, washing up for dinner, homework, and helping with chores are also included. The book concludes with Billy's bedtime routine. As his mother tucks him in, she sets a positive example by thanking Billy for being such a well-mannered cub.
I read this delightful children's story during breakfast. It's an amusing little tale young children will enjoy. The fact that it also teaches character-building traits is an added bonus. Rhyming stories like this one are fun to read aloud. What I liked most about it was that I could imagine sharing it with my seven-year-old grandson, and I could almost hear him giggle. I've read to him since he was an infant, and I am usually able to anticipate books he will like--this one fits the bill. The colorful illustrations are quite simple, which may result in criticism. However, in my experience, young children often prefer this type of simplicity. I also appreciated the author's use of positive reinforcement as a teaching tool, which can be effective with even tiny tots.
The only thing I disliked about this sweet book was the number of editorial errors. "Your" was incorrectly used instead of "you're" three times. Combined with the other punctuation errors I noted in this short twenty-five-page book, I found it necessary to deduct a star. Nevertheless, I rate this book 3 out of 4 stars. Despite the errors, it's an enjoyable story that teaches manners in a creative way.
I recommend the book to young children under the age of nine. Parents, grandparents, and teachers will appreciate this fun approach to teaching manners and may enjoy creating a star chart and a list of reminders for their children.
Billy Bear Cub
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