CM . . .
. Volume XX Number 41. . . .June 20, 2014
Franklin and Rabbit have planned to play together in their rocket ship in Franklin’s backyard. Much to Franklin’s disappointment, his little sister Harriet wants to join in. When Rabbit arrives, she convinces him to have a tea party with her and then tries to include herself in their rocket ship adventure. However, this is not what Franklin had in mind. With the help of Mr. Turtle, Harriet is kept occupied inside the house so Franklin and Rabbit can play. When Franklin mentions how annoying Harriet is, Rabbit admits that he misses his brothers and sisters. Franklin decides that including Harriet might make his friend feel better, and so he invites her to join in. Harriet is thrilled, and the three of them play peacefully in the backyard until late in the evening.
Franklin’s choice to include Harriet invites readers to discuss why he did this. The concept of empathy, although abstract, is well-illustrated in this story. Cooperation and inclusion are also important ideas that can be discussed after reading this story. Young children can learn about compromise through Franklin’s decision to have a “space tea party” at the end of the story.
As always, books in the Franklin series deliver a wholesome message with realistic situations that children can relate to. Because the large, colourful illustrations on each page contain most of the plot details, children will be able to enjoy reading the pictures even if they are too young to read the story.
Claire Perrin is an elementary teacher in Toronto, ON.
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Copyright © the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.