Book Rave: What Do You Say, Dear?

We love revisiting books from our childhood. The illustrations and words flood us with memory and feeling. As we read books from our past to our own children, they take on new meaning. We make new memories as we see the story through our children’s eyes, through their experience. Yet our experience isn’t lost, and as parents, many of us wish to communicate to our children what it was like when we were young. Books — because  of their power to preserve emotion — are the perfect way to share a part of our youth with our little ones.

Cover of What Do You Say, Dear by Sesyle Joslin

The book, What Do You Say, Dear? by Sesyle Joslin (illustrations by Maurice Sendak) brings back happy memories of “playing proper” with our mothers. The book takes you through hilariously imaginative situations. At the close of each absurd scenario the reader is prompted with the question: What do you say, dear? and encouraged to politely reply.

We have loved rediscovering What Do You Say, Dear through our children’s joy. Our little ones love the silly illustrations and pretend scenarios. We love its light-hearted approach to teaching manners. Here are 3 more parenting points encouraged by this charming book from our past.

Illustration from What Do You Say, Dear? by Sesyle Joslin

1. Learning manners can be fun.
When it comes to manners, children are inclined to “play along” when the parent plays a little, too. What Do You Say, Dear reinforces courtesy in a jovial way without taking anything too seriously. Its witty style also teaches humor!

2. Children learn through pretend play.
Children and adults alike can’t help but laugh at the ridiculous pretend scenes in What Do You Say, Dear. Children, however, respond so positively to the pages because “make believe” is the means by which they learn. Children must be granted the freedom to explore their imaginations in order to make sense of the world.

3. Reading with your child nurtures a bond.
There are many ways to strengthen your relationship with your child. A great way is to read aloud to your child. But so often parents aren’t sure how to engage their reader. What Do You Say, Dear offers a dialogue, where your child is an active participant.


This Is the end. Goodbye. Illustration from book by Sesyle Joslin

Celebrate today; dig up and share a book from your childhood with your little one. You’ll be glad you did.  (Be sure to share which book in the comments, below!) We wish you happy reading together. Always.

All Wrapped Up Parties, LLC is a local, mom-owned and operated party planning business serving North Carolina’s Greater Triangle Area and shipping signature party boxes nationwide.

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