Children Make Terrible Pets
One of the most read books in my household has got to be Children Make Terrible Pets, written and illustrated by Peter Brown. This book is visually and humorously appealing to children 4 to 6 years of age and of both genders. The main characters are of a male and a female, so both sexes are represented. Most children this age are attracted to humor that thinks “outside the box” so to speak, and this book delivers on that.
Children at this age are becoming more mature in terms of their physical development. They can now walk, run and are beginning to be able to balance and use coordinated movements to do more physical activities. They are still growing, but not as rapidly as from birth-3 years of age. Their thought processes have developed as well. Most children in the age group are able to differentiate between reality and pretend play. They are beginning to think more abstractly. Socially, these children are becoming more aware of other children, and forming are friendships with peers.
Children Make Terrible Pets tells the story of a young bear, Lucy, who one day stumbles upon a lost boy in her woods. She immediately gushes over the young boys’ cuteness and gives him the name of Squeaker. She rushes him home and begs her mother to let her keep him, only to be met with the response “Lucielle Beatrice Bear! Don’t you know that children make terrible pets?”1 (Brown, 2010, pg. 9) Of course after Lucy begs again, her mother lists the responsibilities of pet ownership, to which Lucy quickly agrees to. Lucy and Squeaker begin their days of unscathed friendship until Lucy discovers it’s not all it’s cracked up to be. Lucy becomes increasingly frustrated with Squeaker, but her heart breaks when one day he disappears. She searches high and low for him until her nose leads her to him. She finds him at home with his family and comes to the realization that Squeaker is not a pet. She comes home and admits to her mother that she...