Monday, April 27, 2009

Monkey with a Tool Belt

I don't do book reviews very often, but Monkey with a Tool Belt is very special... It is just the kind of book I would have loved if I were 4 or 5 years old. I know because I love it today. If you have young children with an inclination toward making things and fixing things, or if you have young children who have never thought such things possible, these books by Chris Monroe are perfect. Fun, imaginative, entertaining. There are two books in what I hope will become a series, Monkey with a Tool Belt, and Monkey with a Tool Belt and the Noisy Problem You never know. Some kids might be inspired to think, "If a monkey can fix things and make things and have so much fun, maybe I can too!"


  1. Anonymous4:40 AM

    I will have to pass the link along to my nieces and nephews who have young kids. We have to keep this tradition going.


  2. Some parents might be terrified of these books. I know one craft artist who bought tools for her grandson and her daughter-in-law refused to let them in the house. Her son might make a mess or saw on the furniture. Scary but true that some parents would place their own convenience and protection of their stuff over their children's growth.

  3. Doug,

    Last Christmas I decided to start giving my grandchildren (2 and 4)tools and a nice bag to keep them in. I started with things they could easily handle without injuring themselves or others, e.g., tape measure, paint brush, shop pencil, small hammer, etc. I will keep expanding this as they grow older, including more tools that require a bit more dexterity and skill to use, e.g., pliers, screwdriver, small saw, etc. I think it is important to match the tools to the child's development and skills. It makes no sense to have a 2 year old trying to manipulate a tool for which he/she does not have the physical development to handle. I think that makes the whole issue more workable for my daughter to handle with the kids. In fact, she has told me on several occasions that they are measuring things all the time. (I also put a small notebook in their bags so they could write down measurements!)

  4. JD, those are great ideas. And I know your grandchildren will grow up knowing their own creative powers. Best of all, they have you.

    When Chico Bon Bon hones in on the solution to a problem, he always starts with a tape measure and he writes down the measurements in a notebook and divides by 7.

    Fun stuff. I contacted the author of Monkey with a Tool Belt and she comes from a family in the hardware business in Minnesota, so knowing about tools is something that comes easy for her. Her first book is being translated into Swedish, so no doubt some sloyders will be captivated by Chico Bon Bon's creative escapades.