Goodnight mice! by Frances Watts
Ill. by Judy Watson. ABC Books, 2011. ISBN 978073332425.
Picture book. Mitzi, Billy, Clementine and Oliver are about to be put to bed by their parents. All four are tired little mice and the procedure of going to bed is spelled out as they follow the routine of going to bed. First they kiss their grandfather good night, then climb the stairs, have a bath, clean their teeth, put on their pyjamas, climb into bed, have a story read to them and finally the lights are put out and they go to sleep.
Told in rhyming four line refrains, the rhythm is easy to pick up and so listeners can predict the next words as it is read aloud. The straightforward story, giving a procedure before bed time, will engender a great deal of discussion about what children do before bed and what time they go to sleep. Teachers will be able to use the story as an impetus to discussion in the class about routines and their importance, about procedures and house rules. The mice are endearing and the illustrations reflect another level of humour which is obvious to the listener as the story is read. Children will delight in the antics of the mice in their bedtime routine, taking time to delay the moment, but all the while, ready to sleep.