A Guide to Children's Picture Books on Manners

Looking for a children’s picture books that inspires good manners?  

As the founder of Golly Gee-pers, a company that develops resources that make teaching and learning social skills fun, I’ve done the hard work for you.  Below is a list of 5 terrific books for children (pre-school through elementary) that will entertain, stimulate dialogue and provide guidance along the way.    


1. If a Very Important Person Invited you to lunch

Want your child to opt in to making polite choices without having to nag them? Give them a “what if “ scenario with this adorable story that follows one boy’s adventures into the world of dining with VIPs. Through simple rhyme and picture, children will explore their internal motivation to use good manners. Great for opening a dialogue or left to food for thought.


2. My Mouth is a Volcano

If you have an interrupter or just want to encourage the art of polite conversation this is a good book for you. It’s told from the child’s perspective in lyrical language that kids can relate to. Children will empathize with little Louis’ struggle while gaining insight into managing their feelings.







3. Hands are not for Hitting

Written by behavioral therapist Martine Agassi, Ph.D., this book reads like a story while helping children to identify the physical sensations that accompany anger.   As a result children learn to recognize their emotions before they become overwhelming.  Also, there are engaging questions and activity suggestions at the end.


4. The Greedy Python

 If you are dealing with a “mine, all mine” phase with your child, you and she will get a kick out of this story about Greedy Python who keeps eating everything up.  Eventually, though greediness gets him into trouble when he ends up eating his own tale.   Children will giggle their way through this humorous book and the next time the “mine all mine” beast shows up at your house you’ll have Greedy Python to help remind her to share. 


5.  If Everybody Did

If Everybody Did
By Jo Ann Stover

An oldie but goodie.  Through poetic rhyme and humor this book examines the natural consequences of our sometimes less than stellar choices.  Although intended for young children the message is equally applicable to all ages.  

Ok, one more....after all what child doesn't like "The Bears."  So self-explanatory on this one!  #6

Prince George and Princess Charlotte may have professional nannies to help their parents out, but never underestimate the power of a good book! 

Blake Lively Makes Fun of Herself and Gets Table Manners Cards

   In case you didn't see the recent Late Night with Blake Lively, it was hilarious! While carrying herself as one classy lady she dished up self-deprecating stories of dining out with the likes of Karl Lagerfeld, Anna Wintour and President Obama.  In doing so, she made all of us feel comfortable and at ease.  Who couldn't relate to those awkward moments all of us have felt when the invisible mother of decorum is suddenly hovering over our heads whispering, "you're doing it all wrong."  Thanks for being real.  You deserve a Golly Gee-pers thumbs-up.


Grumpy is a Member of our Family

Grumpy is a member of our family.  Yes he is.  He has cute nicknames like cranky, grouchy, crabby, testy and a few more that are mumbled under the breath.  Strangely enough lots of people who know us have never met him.  That’s because he doesn’t socialize much.  He just lies around our house.  He doesn’t’ go to school, or to the store.  He certainly doesn’t go to work.    In fact, now that I think of it, he rarely goes out in public.  Yep, he’s a homebody.  It’s where he feels most comfortable.  After all, the world out there might not understand him.  They might not even like him.  He definitely feels much safer at home.

Is Grumpy a member of your family?  If so, I have some very good friends who are about to help you out.  They are Carl Fredrickson the loveable character from the movie Up; Tadar Sauce, that sour puss gone viral, Oscar the dumpster diving Muppet and Disney’s dwarf with the prickly personality, Grumpy.  Simply print out their picture (or better yet buy a plush or doll version) and set it aside.

Now, rub your hands together and with a, "moo ha haa" wait for someone in your family to feel cranky and take it out on others. When they do, bingo!   Rather than engaging in their downer of negative feelings simply retrieve your Grump of choice and discreetly place him where he will be found by the cantankerous offender.  Go ahead, you have permission to have fun with this.

For best results, try to predict where your cranky person is likely to go in the near future (that spot on the couch they left to go get a snack, leaning against a bed pillow, on top of their electronic device etc.).  No, you can't just hand Grumpy directly to him or her, as this might feel a wee bit confrontational.   Just let him be found without a word.  You can watch from around the corner and snicker discreetly as your person discovers their new friend.  Chances are your grumpy family member will laugh at his or her reflection and relax a little and just maybe (one can always hope), apologize.    After Carl or Tadar has done his job then mysteriously put him away until he is needed another day.

We've used this method in our family for several years now and it really is effective!  Not only will everyone have a good laugh but it's a great way to increase your family's EQ (emotional intelligence).

Want more ideas where these came from?  Please visit us at http://gollygee-pers.com/


Wondering what to put inside those plastic Easter eggs besides candy



How about revealing the magic of kindness with a letter from Elf Raffi or Fairy Poli.Imagine your child opening an egg and finding this tiny little envelope. Inside is a letter. The writing is so small you have to use a magnifying glass to read it. What a whimsical delight for children and adults alike!

To create this experience for your child, go to our Freebies page.  There you will find instructions to download the  letter and envelope template. You can choose Fairy Poli for girls or Elf Raffi for boys. Have fun!


Redirect hot-button topics this Thanksgiving with this simple and fun game.

"I don't get it."

Please Pass The Riddles

Hot-button topics; what family doesn’t have them? Often politics is at the top of the list.  If you’re hosting Thanksgiving, here’s a fun game that will keep the peace by redirecting your group's hot button topics back to the family friendly.
Fill a basket with fun riddles on pieces of folded paper. You can print family friendly riddles for free at www.gollygee-pers.com. Just go to the "freebies" tab. Or, depending on the ages of your guests you may want more sophisticated humor.

Choose one hot-button topic that is likely to come up at your holiday gathering. As guests arrive let them know you will be playing a game called Please Pass the Riddles. The topic of politics (or whatever hot-button topic you choose) will be off limits for the day.  If a person is caught bringing up the topic any person can say, "Please Pass the Riddles."  The basket is then passed to the person who brought up the topic. This person will pull a riddle from the basket and read it aloud. As guests try to answer the riddle the conversation will be redirected away from the hot button topic and back toward fun. If playing this game at the table, have each person take turns trying to answer the riddle, before giving up the answer.

In the end everyone wins, of course. 

Have fun and have a very Happy Thanksgiving from Golly Gee-pers!


Want to stop your child from pouting?  Then don't suppress it.  Let him express it!  

Everyone wants to be heard and have their feelings matter and kids are no exception. With Golly Gee-pers pouting posters kids are encouraged to express their feelings through creativity.  Have your child tell you why he or she is unhappy in a picture or a story.   You'll be surprised at the healing effect.  It might even result in a meaningful conversation instead of coal for Christmas. 

freebie pouting posters at http://www.gollygee-pers.com/ 

Table Manners Cards earns a gold award from Mom's Choice Awards!

Golly Gee-pers is tremendously honored to have just received a gold award from the prestigious Mom’s Choice Awards organization for our game, Table Manners Cards ( http://gollygee-pers.com ) .  It was deemed “among the best family friendly products” in the toys and games category.   Thank you to MCA and the families who tested our product!  

Mom’s Choice Awards’ mission is to help families grow emotionally, physically and spiritually.  If you are a parent or educator and would like more information about Mom’s Choice Awards, honored products or their magazine, Entro please go to www.momschoiceawards.com.



Paul Minton from Wales won our limerick contest for being clever AND staying on topic. Congratulations!

Here is his limerick:

A collier, who thought himself fine,
Would not go to the back of a line:
He pushed into the queue,
With no please or thank you,

 But it turned out it was all in his mine.


Submit your limerick to win a prize and promote civility and kindness!



Whether you are Irish, have a wee bit of Irish blood, like the color green or simply like to create limericks, we want to hear from you!

Create a limerick about civility, kindness or manners and the best one will win a set of our award winning Table Manners Cards along with an official Golly Gee-pers award certificate.  To view the prize go to: www.gollygee-pers.com.   The winning limerick will be posted on our blog,  Facebook page and twitter on St. Patrick’s Day, March 17, 2013. 

To submit your entry:
    1. Add it to the comments section below or
    2. E-mail it to us at gollygee_pers.@yahoo.com or
    3. Post it on our Facebook page:  https://www.facebook.com/GollyGeePersManners?ref=ts&fref=ts

Deadline for entries is March 15th.

Just to get the limerick ball rolling I offer one of my own:

 There once was a guy who was rude
 He put everyone in a bad mood
 When he shoved in the lines and talked all the time
 While he ate so we saw what he chewed.


In Honor of Grandparents Day Sept. 9

In case you were not aware, Grandparents Day is September 9, 2012.

I for one will be honoring this day.  Although my "Grams" is gone now I was so fortunate to have had her in my life.  I cannot over emphasize the important role she had in my personal development.  In honor of Grandparent Day I would like to share just one of the ways in which she influenced me.

I recently came across this quote:

“Love me when I deserve it least because that’s when I need it the most.”

That’s exactly what my grandmother did.   My “Grams” had a way of looking at me that both nailed my behavior and said I love you at the same time.  She didn’t even have to say a word.  No preaching or scolding.  Her look simply said, “I’m so sorry you screwed up and I love you.”    The reason this was such an effective parenting tool was because it made it bearable to own up and take responsibility for my actions.  In fact, it facilitated the process!  Kids typically know when they’ve done something wrong, but, what they often don’t know is how to go about making things right again.  Had my grandmother focused on making me feel guilty or ashamed or on punishing me, I might have tried to deny my culpability and protect my fragile ego.  It’s very hard to admit, “I’m wrong” when you’re in a corner and people are shouting at you, “you’re wrong.”  Instead, what my grandmother did was give me room.  She allowed me space to contemplate my actions.  After a while I would go to her apologize and we’d talk about it.   I would genuinely want to do better. Incidentally, I never once had my old mistakes dredged up and placed before me as evidence of my past failures.  This too instilled a sense of trust.  Instead of having to hide my mistakes from her, I had an adult I could go to without losing my dignity.     I’m not sure if my Grams was aware of her “technique” but I certainly have adopted it years later with my own children.  Sometimes my husband mistakes my reaction as no action until he sees the results.  When he does he just shakes his head and smiles.  So, in honor of my grandmother and all the grandparents out there teaching and loving children unconditionally, I salute you.  You deserve to be honored!  
Me and my Grams under her favorite Cherry Blossom Tree


Zulily Eating Right and Etiquette Event!

If you have never heard of Zulily then you are missing out!  It's a new online store that offers discounts on top quality brands for moms, babies and kids. We are talking savings of up to  90% off of retail prices.  Not only do you save on gas and time schlepping kids to and from the mall but you can find the things you need at rock bottom prices! 

Golly Gee-pers is so excited to be part of the Zulily Eating Right and Etiquette event this Monday, August 6-9.  This is a terrific opportunity if you would like to buy several Table Manners Card games at once to use as party favors for a girl's tea party,  Thanksgiving or as stocking stuffers for the kids. You could save a bundle and help make the world a little more polite in the process!


Celebrity quiz...

What celebrity couple would this gift wrap be for? Hint:  They donate an enormous amount of time and resources to help children around the world.

answer:  Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt of course.  Golly Gee-pers hopes they love their new Table Manners Card Game.  To get yours,  go to www.gollygee-pers.com