Author: Eric Carle
Interest Level: Ages 4-8
From the Book Jacket: Boldly designed pictures and a humorous text tell the story of a tiny anti-hero like no other. The Grouchy Ladybug didn't say "please" or "thank you"; it wouldn't share; it thought it was bigger and more important than anyone else; and it was always ready to pick a fight. This fast moving story with clever die-cut pages invites children to explore the concepts of time, size, shape, and manners. They will laugh and learn from this bad-tempered braggart who met its match and became a nice and better behaved bug.
Why It's On My Bookshelf: A punch, a kick, a pull, a shove, a pinch.....oh yep, those things happen between kiddos at my school from time to time. There's lots of developmental (and environmental) reasons this goes down. I won't bore you with them. My job is to help kids with social growth and surprise surprise....they can get mad and angry during the school day! I've been reading this story for quite a few years. It's very loved among kids because of it's cool setup with varying page sizes and illustrations. But The Grouchy Ladybug has also been a powerful tool for teaching anger management to my K-2 students. Cuz just about every page she is trying to scrap with someone - "Hey you! Wanna fight!!?" Perfect for teaching replacement behaviors. I love hearing the students try and figure out what's under her anger. They try and relate to her! Another thing that gets this story rockin' is my ladybug puppets (I'm borderline obsessed with puppets...it could be another blog in itself). I have two ladybug puppets the kids use to practice how to handle your anger and solve problems. You can do a lot with this story in the area of social skills.
PS. I didn't mention this in my review, but it's also a great CONCRETE book to teach expected behavior and school rules about fighting. We don't fight. Period. There's always another way.
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