Good Table Manners for Little Monkeys by Susie Lee Jin is a cute introduction to eating at the "adult's table."
This small (a little over 5 x 5 inches) board book is filled with silly, cute monkeys showing what good (and bad!) table manners are. The text is super-simple, making it ideal for babies and toddlers. First, the author writes, we should wash our hands, then sit up straight in our chairs. Other important manners include not having toys or elbows on the table, saying grace, putting napkins around our necks or on our laps, using utensils properly, not talking with our mouths full, chewing with our mouths closed, not slurping, trying not to burp (but "if you do, just say 'Excuse me.'"), and cleaning up after everyone's done.
What I Like: The illustrations make this book super-appealing to young children. The kids I read this to laughed their way through the pages, saying how silly one monkey was for wearing a spoon on his nose, and how naughty another was for sneaking food during grace. This sort of humor makes learning manners a lot more fun - and a lot more memorable.
What I Dislike: Although the text clearly delineates what good behavior is, if you have a child who takes naughty behavior shown in books and explores it in real life, this may not be the best book for you.
Overall Rating: Very good.
Age Appeal: According to the publisher, 4 to 8, I think this book is most appropriate for infants to preschoolers.
Publisher Info: Harvest House Publishers, 2009; ISBN: 0736924809; board book; $5.99