What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parent's need to know that there's not much to object to in this book. There is some schoolyard bullying, sibling rivalry, and family arguments, but most things are resolved effectively. Name-calling sticks to "stupid" and "maggot."
What's the story?
Clarice Bean has a lot of worries. Some simple ones -- like largish spiders and if one could live off toast alone -- and some big ones like change, infinity, and the meaning of life. She writes all of her worries down and tries to prepare for them like her hero Ruby Redfort, using Ruby's "Survival Handbook" to help. When Clarice faces some big changes, including a new girl at school, trouble with her best friend, and arguments at home, Clarice wonders if her even hero Ruby could handle it.
Is it any good?
CLARICE BEAN, DON'T LOOK NOW is a delight. It's a great read for all kids, but specifically for reluctant readers. The book has things that all kids can identify with -- crazy family members, best friends, and worrying about things bigger than they are. It also helps them approach the subject of bullies and standing up to them. The book has fun and silly times that will make kids giggle and great characters that will make them want to read the other Clarice Bean books.
Parents will like how author Lauren Child intermingles great life lessons from Ruby Redfort's "Survival Handbook" with real-life situations Clarice faces.
Explore, discuss, enjoy
Families can talk about how first impressions may not always be accurate. How did Clarice learn this lesson? Have you every gotten the wrong impression about someone? Has someone ever gotten the wrong impression about you? Families can also talk about ways to resolve conflict. Have you ever been bullied? How did you handle it? What would you do differently? Who could you talk to if you were having trouble in school? Also, do you ever write down your worries? Does it help?