From School Library Journal
PreSchool-Good toilet training books seem as scarce as a clean public restroom in Times Square, and, unfortunately, this book won't alleviate the problem. A parade of needy children is joined by a group of wise mice that guides the youngsters to the bathroom and back. Encouraging phrases will assist reluctant children: "Don't Panic! Don't Fret! And please don't ignore it! Now is your chance to show how BIG you are!" Reminders to use toilet paper, flush, and wash hands are included. A final message reassures, "Don't worry if you don't get it right the first time-you'll get another chance." The book's benefits are overshadowed by the busy and possibly confusing illustrations. Large, bold type is set word by word into flags, banners, and signs held by the small creatures. When one child arrives in the bathroom, the toilet lid is covered with a well-meaning but unfortunately placed mouse band. While libraries will be able to work around the chart on the inside of the dustjacket and the page of (unattached) stickers that will allow children to record their successes, these features make the book most useful for home libraries.Bina Williams, Bridgeport Public Library, CT
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PreS. This good-natured book, by the author of Don't Let the Pigeons Drive the Bus
[BKL S 1 03], uses just the right tack for kids who theoretically
understand toilet use,
but still have misgivings about it in practice. Potty trainees will delight in reviewing bathroom procedures alongside a cast of worried-looking boys and girls and a pep squad of encouraging mice. Willems again demonstrates a genius for spare but expressive lines and an almost uncanny rapport with the preschool audience. The plainspoken text, which appears in placards raised cheerleader-style by the mice, offers pithy instructions ("Boys can stand. Girls should sit") and assurances ("It won't take long") that get right at the heart of kids' concerns. There's no real story, and true to its title, the book deals only with one bodily function. But, never mind; it will still go a long way toward easing the anxiety surrounding this developmental hurdle. Each copy comes with a chart on the flip side of the book jacket and reward stickers for home use, but don't let that stop you from putting it on the library shelf. Jennifer MattsonCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved