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. Volume VIII Number 5 . . . . November 2, 2001
While Caillou enjoys playing with his toys, he likes chocolate pudding even more. However, when his mother calls him downstairs to the kitchen for some, he first has to be reminded to put away his toys that are on the stairs. Then, just as he's about to join his sister, Rosie, in eating some chocolate pudding, his father calls him outside where his father asks him to put away the toys left on the driveway. Once again in the kitchen, Caillou is then called to the bathroom by his father because there are still more Caillou toys there. Finally, when Caillou does get to eat his pudding, his parents point out that Caillou has many toys, some of which he does not play with any longer. "What should we do with them?" becomes the question with which Caillou must deal. Reluctantly, Caillou agrees to pass some along to his younger sister while Daddy suggests that the two of them build a big box for storing the rest.
Calliou's situation is one with which many young children and their parents can relate; playing with toys, not putting them away, is fun. Caillou's reluctance to pass "his" toys on to a sibling is also a most natural child response. Mommy's reaction to the toy-cluttered house is also very real: "Look at this mess!...What did I tell you, Caillou?" And like so many children, Caillou knows the correct response, but he just does not act on it without being reminded. An adaptation of an episode of the Caillou television series, this book is a worthy addition for home libraries or those serving preschoolers and their parents.
Dave Jenkinson, who also needs to tidy his "toys," teaches courses in children's and adolescent literature courses in the Faculty of Education, University of Manitoba.
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