Books, Family, Learning, Life, Reviews

Book Review: How to Be a Person

Today’s featured book is titled How to be a Person, and a super-important one; perfect to read and use as we continue to practice social distancing; written with tweens and younger teens in mind. While some skills might have you wondering, as an adult, about their inclusion here, I do know as a parent, that these are skills that are critical; and need to be either brought into our kids’ routines as a regular thing consciously or taught to them consciously. So thank you to the author for this book

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How to Be a Person

Book Info

Title: How to Be a Person – 65 Hugely Useful, Super-Important Skills to Learn before You’re Grown Up
Author: Catherine Newman
Illustrator: Debbie Fong
Publishers: Storey Publishing
Pub Date: 26 May 2020
Genre: Children’s Nonfiction
Age-Range:  10 – 14 years
Source: NetGalley

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This humorous and entirely practical how-to book for kids aged 10 and up passes along essential life skills — without the parental nagging. From how to write a thank-you note to how to make a simple meal, this valuable advice, written with wit and wisdom, will help every kid taking the first steps into adulthood.

My Thoughts

Of course I was a kid myself years ago (gasp, go my kids! You were a kid once?! just kidding….), and I had to or automatically learned many of the skills outlined in this book. They were things we did, simply because. The present generation, and the skills they learn automatically, are different, and thus makes this book more necessary.

As a parent who constantly shifts between letting my kids (teens) learn by practice or even more effective, from their mistakes, and badgering them on the hows-whats-whys of the everyday tasks that are seemingly mundane but totally important, and simply giving up and letting them figure it out when they need to do it all by themselves, this book is a boon. While we try to inculcate many of these and I do know that my teens know at least part of these very basic skills, there are some that get missed because we don’t realize it needs to be taught or it gets lost in all the eye-rolling!

This book helps with all those missed skills, and the humor, cuteness factor, and practical, no-nonsense as well as age-appropriate (no speaking down), plus non-parental conversational style along with the fun two-tone cartoons definitely strengthens its cause.

It includes the following sections:

  • Other Beings (How to Care For the People, Pets, and Plants in Your Life)
  • Saying it Right (How to be Kind and Get Your Point Across)
  • Dirty Things (How to Clean and Care for Your Home)
  • Edible Food (How to Make Meals and Find Your Way Around the Kitchen)
  • You’re Wearing That (How to Clean and Care for Your Clothes)
  • Your Two Cents (How to Get, Give, and Spend Money)
  • Useful Skills (How to do Basic Important Things)

So there you have it, from watering plants to writing a thank you note to addressing envelopes, and from boiling an egg to folding clothes and figuring out whether to buy that item all your friends have as well as to use that screwdriver, this book teaches it all. And I loved the pop quizzes sprinkled throughout the book!

In Summary

Definitely recommend this for tweens and younger teens; and just about anyone who will benefit from these basic skills.

Hint, hint: A perfect gift item for the young one of this age group that you know (even if it is your own!)

Get It Here

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Barnes and Noble
|| IndieBound

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Book Review: How to Be a Person

Disclaimer: Thank you to NetGalley and the publishers for the eARC of the book; these are my honest opinions after reading this book.

Linking this to IMWAYR over at Teach Mentor Texts where you can discover more wonderful children’s books

And Now, The End of This Post

Dear reader, what are the skills you consider essential that everyone needs to know, or skills to be learned by specific ages?? What are some other books you have read that help teach much-needed skills? Do let me know.

12 thoughts on “Book Review: How to Be a Person

  1. This sounds like a great book for youngsters! I have an 11 year old grandson that it would be perfect for and by adding a bit of humor it will be on the fun side also.

  2. How CUTE is this? Sounds perfect for my 14 year old as he’s beginning to take on more responsibilities (and he LOOKS much older than he is since he already towers over me). Thanks for sharing, Vidya!

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