Manners Are Not For Monkeys

by Heather Tekavec

The old zookeeper has no idea how much trouble it will cause when she moves the monkeys into a cage near the picnic and play areas. Now the monkeys can watch the children up close, and they find the children so fascinating that before long, they start behaving just like them! Mother Monkey is not amused. When she sees her little monkeys chewing with their mouths closed, she demands to know what's going on. “We are using good manners,” they say. “Manners are not for monkeys,” Mother tells them. But it's no use. In fact, her little monkeys won't do any monkey things anymore --- no more swinging all at once from the branches, screeching or tossing their banana peels on the ground. Is there anything Mother Monkey can do to get them to behave like “good little monkeys” again?

This funny picture book by Heather Tekavec turns the topic of manners and behavior on its head and offers a clever, non-preachy way to begin discussions with preschoolers and kindergartners about social skills and self-control --- key skills for school readiness. The expressive faces of both the monkeys and the children speak volumes in the lively, detailed illustrations by David Huyck, adding to the fun. This book makes a wonderful choice for a pre-reader storytime.

Heather Tekavec Author Biography

Heather Tekavec discovered, while working as a preschool teacher, that children’s books were a lot more fun than adult books. After falling in love with the works of Pat Hutchins, Keiko Kasza, Jez Alborough and many others, she couldn’t help but start writing some of her own. It’s probably not coincidence that the first two of her eleven published books, Storm is Coming & What’s That Awful Smell, mirror two of her own childhood fears – thunder and yucky smells! Her most recent book, Manners are Not for Monkeys, mirrors her childhood a little too, but she’ll never admit whether she was more like the monkeys or the wild kids!

In addition to books, she enjoys writing short stories, articles and poems for children’s magazines, and has delved a few times into writing scripts and directing live theatre.

Twenty-some years since it began, Heather still loves children’s books best. She doesn’t teach preschool anymore but still loves meeting children during author visits to schools and libraries. She lives with her husband and 3 daughters in Cloverdale, BC, sometimes writing, sometimes playing, and always reading…children’s books!

David Huyck Illustrator Biography

David grew up half a block from the candy store in one direction, and half a block from the playground in the other. Along with a limitless supply of Legos, cartoons and all genres of books, the resulting high-fructose queasiness is the point source for everything he has made ever since.

David has been a teacher and a computer programmer, and he has spent countless hours in the laboratory trying to clone a unicorn for his daughter. He keeps trying.
David loves walking around in the woods almost as much as he loves to draw and make stuff. He lives with his family in Northfield, Minnesota.