Tuesday, September 11, 2012

A Bad Case of Tattle Tongue - By Julia Cook

Julia Cook is a devoted children’s author who knows what it takes to make it onto the list of the top ten books for 4 year olds. She demonstrated this ability with her 2005 release, “A Bad Case of Tattle Tongue.” At first glance, the illustration on the cover looks a little intimidating – maybe even scary or excessively silly to the average post-toddler. Albeit, the real surprise is on the interior, as Cook weaves a wondrous tale about Josh and his affinity for tattling on his classmates, his brother, and even his dog!

What makes this book a good teaching guide?

In this story, Josh doesn’t have any friends because he tattles on them all. He loves telling any adult who will listen about the supposed awful things the other children (and his pets) do. After a long night of tattling, he finds his tongue has grown to several times its normal size. It’s also turned yellow with big purple pole-dots! From there, Josh has to relearn the “tattle rules” to set his tongue back the way it was.

The whole concept of this book is clever and creative. In terms children can understand, the story makes a comparison between tattling and telling. Adults will have an easier time teaching kids that tattling is unnecessary, while telling when someone is hurt or bullied is a good thing to do. It gives clear examples of what is considered important to tell and what is considered tattling; a feat that most parents or teachers have a hard time with.

This book is especially relevant in classroom settings where children might be subjected to bullies or hurtful comments. Teachers can use the tattling story to enhance their learning environment, encouraging friendship and trust within their classroom. This interactive approach could lead to a decrease in name-calling while bringing kids closer together.

To find other great books for 4 year olds this year, visit:


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