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Are You Quite Polite? Hardcover – October 1, 2006

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Kindergarten-Grade 3–This fourth entry by Katz and Catrow features 14 selections about manners set to familiar tunes. For the most part, the music and words are an easy fit, although a few, such as Writing Thank-Yous to the tune of Alouette, might require some rehearsal. The verses scan well, with only the occasional resort to invention when no rhyme presents itself (Then there is Ingrid,/Who did a bad thingrid). There are entries on lateness, table manners, sneezing, nose picking, and being quiet in the library, sung to Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star. Done in watercolors, colored pencil, and ink, the cartoon artwork is appropriately energetic and chaotic, amplifying the humor in the situations. Useful as a lighthearted introduction to etiquette or for just plain fun.–Grace Oliff, Ann Blanche Smith School, Hillsdale, NJ
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

Like Abbott and Costello's comic synergy, the pairing of songwriter Katz's impolite songs and Catrow's cartoon illustrations is a match made in Chucklesville. The 14 "silly dilly manners songs" here are guaranteed to produce appreciative snorts and guffaws from kids. The song titles set up the farcical verse while the watercolor-and-colored-pencil caricatures take the hilarity over the top: "Jimmy Picks Boogers" (which Katz suggests should be sung to the tune of "The Blue-Tail Fly"); "Don't Chew Gum in the Classroom" (sung to "Take Me Out to the Ball Game"); "Don't Talk with Beans in Your Mouth" (sung to "Michael, Row the Boat Ashore"). Adults may grimace at some of the rude details, but kids will chortle out loud and remember the manners messages precisely because they are so cleverly concocted. One copy won't be enough. For more fun with the subject, link this to David Greenberg's Don't Forget Your Etiquette (2006). Julie Cummins
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 2 - 8 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - 3
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books; First Edition edition (October 1, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0689869703
  • ISBN-13: 978-0689869709
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 0.4 x 11 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #754,421 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Alan Katz has written many books for children and adults, including the award-winning songbooks Take Me Out of the Bathtub and Other Silly Dilly Songs and I'm Still Here in the Bathtub, Where Did They Hide My Presents?, Are You Quite Polite?, Don't Say That Word!, and Stinky Thinking. His poetry books include OOPS! and Poems I Wrote When No One Was Looking. He has also written family humor and puzzles for publications including Rosie Magazine, The New York Times and the New York Daily News.

Alan is also a writer-producer with extensive television credits. He is a five-time Emmy nominee for his writing for The Rosie O'Donnell Show, and he contributed songs and comedy material to shows and specials such as The 1999 and 2000 Grammy Awards, The 1998 and 2000 Tony Awards, ABC's A Rosie Christmas special, HBO's Kids Are Punny, Fergie, and ABC's Kids Are People Too. Alan has also created shows, developed concepts and produced pilots for TNN, VH1, and King World.

Alan also scripted episodes for animated shows including Taz-Mania, Goof Troop and Disney's Raw Toonage (Emmy nominee for Best Writing). Alan also created and wrote long running stage shows including Glued to the Tube and The Wheel of Fortune Live Tour, and he developed and wrote the Nickelodeon Studios Live Tour at Universal Studios in Orlando.

Alan has written print, television and radio advertising and promotional campaigns for a wide array of consumer products and entertainment properties, including Pepsi, McDonald's, Disney World, The Weather Channel, HBO, Showtime, WE tv, AMC Network and Sundance Channel.

Alan lives in Fairfield County, Connecticut with his wife and their four kids.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Ulyyf on April 3, 2009
Format: Hardcover
We love these books. We love bellowing these songs at the top of our lungs, and the tunes given are generally familiar to us - Alouette, Pop Goes the Weasel, and so on, although sometimes fitting the words to the melody is a bit of a stretch.

There's definitely some potty humor in here, which appeals to most kids. For example, the song about not putting your mouth on the water fountain finishes with "And stop drinking from the toilet by the way!" (That's a weird illustration too - the toilet has a fountain attachment? Is it like a bidet?) One about not picking your nose in public shows a boy picking his friends' noses - they're not too happy about this.

And they do make sure to spell out Just What Not To Do - some people are concerned that this encourages bad behavior in and of itself. I disagree. I find that my nieces understand that the examples are over the top and chosen to be funny, not as anything to emulate!

I don't object to this at all, I think it's hilarious, but if these things concern you should, as always, read the book before buying.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A. Thamann on July 11, 2009
Format: Hardcover
This is a funny book that I came across at the local library- my almost 4-year-old loved it so much that we still find ourselves singing these silly little songs long after we returned the book. I wouldn't expect children younger than around 4 to understand it much, and it certainly can't be used exclusively for Manners Education. (that would be our job, as parents) :) It is definitely a good way to introduce the topic of common childhood situations/behaviors (nose-picking, how to behave at parties, table manners, etc.) in a fun and non-threatening way. I am now looking to purchase this book and add it to our permanent collection of books! Highly recommended!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Midwest Book Review on December 9, 2006
Format: Hardcover
Alan Katz and David Catrow's ARE YOU QUITE POLITE? tells of silly manners and creates a rollicking, fun story of manners kids might actually like to follow. Here are common rhymes with uncommon lyrics that are crazy and fun comments on a different kind of etiquette indeed.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Love to Read on January 24, 2008
Format: Hardcover
This book is so much fun to read with your children. It is a silly and fun way to learn about good manners. Singing the poems to tunes the kids already know makes it easier for them to remember and we have a great time trying to stay on beat.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Beth A. Lyons on February 23, 2008
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is a great addition to the other silly dilly song books. My first graders love them.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Heather Rawlins on September 6, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book, and other books in this series are amazing. My only problem, my lack of knowledge of all the songs that were used. Have had to google some of them to be able to sing them to my daughter. She loves it, and actually hears the message they are delivering. Highly recommend, quite silly, so if your parenting style does not lean toward the silly fringe, then don't bother, you have to be able to sing about boogers and toots!
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Format: Hardcover
SUMMARY: Katz once again sets his silly verses to classic song tunes such as Twinkle Twinkle Little Star. This time the topic is manners with songs such as "Writing Thank Yous."
ILLUSTRATIONS: The illustrations were not as fun throughout the book as in past Silly Dilly books, but there are a few extra funny pictures.

REVIEW: It felt like Katz had run out of ideas in this book. The verses were not as clever and laugh out loud funny, but there are a few good ones. I had a hard time appreciating some of the verses because I either didn't know the song or because I had a difficult time maintaining the tune with different words inserted.

AGE RECOMMENDATION: As with most of Katz's work, I find the potty humor and grossness factor to be better geared to the older elementary age group of 8-12.
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By Jo on March 25, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Seriously, it is roll over funny in parts. You need to be the kind of person who doesn't mind/enjoys singing in front of your little kids. You sing hilarious new words to familiar children's tunes.

My preschooler loved it so much that she took it to school for show and tell. that said, preschool is too young for this book. better for elementary school as some of the manners issues where foreign to her.
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