Monkey needs to listen or how we give instructions to our children

Sue Graves, Monkey Needs to Listen. A Book About Paying Attention

Published 2016 by Franklin Watts


I used this book to talk again with my daughter about the need to listen when other persons talk or when we are given instructions. She is five now but she has always been mature and I have never underestimated her intelligence or her abilities to understand messages. This is why I think she has never had behavior matters. But still we discuss this subject from time to time.

The story is easy reading and funny. At Jungle School Mr Croc has an interesting idea – to make everyone work in teams to build go-karts and afterwards have a race round the swamp. They are all very excited and listen to the instructions except the monkey who doesn’t listen at all. He doesn’t check the go-kart and almost ruins the race. This was the moment I stopped the reading to discuss about consequences and what we can do to prevent such situations. Monkey is not the bad guy in the story, he is just in a hurry and doesn’t take the time to do his tasks properly. The results are not good, time is wasted and the others are affected as well.

Can monkey learn to listen? Yes.

How does he do that? Well, first he needs to understand his mistakes. Secondly, he has his class mates and Mr Croc who support him. The understanding and gentle behavior of the others help monkey reinforce good behavior.

It is the same with children. They are always in a hurry to see, to do, to explore. It is the parents’ task to find the best moment and the best way to give instructions. The more creative and pleasant the methods are, the better the results become.


You can find the book here:


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