How Can I Wait When There’s a Treat on My Plate?
Dan Graham, Author
Teresa Martinez, Illustrator
Magination Press, Fiction, May 25, 2021
Suitable for ages: 4-8
Themes: Twin brothers, Temptation, Patience, Self-control, Rhyme
Opening: “No twins could be more similar, / no match quite so complete, / no sibling pair has more they share / than brothers Dell and Pete.”
It’s hard for some kids to wait for something that they really want! A marshmallow now or ice cream later?
Twins Dell and Pete are alike in nearly every way. But when faced with a new sweet challenge, they discover a way they’re not so similar after all. Will they be able to resist the very first temptations that they see?
What to like about this book:
Dan Graham has written a charming story about self-control and patience. The rhyming makes it a a fun read aloud at school or home. All children will relate to Pete and Dell’s dilemma of having to choose between the gratification of an immediate sweet treat or waiting for an even better one later.
Who doesn’t like a treat? The twins do! Pete is a lovable character who likes immediate gratification. He’s so tempted by an after school treat (marshmallow, gummy bugs etc.), that he forgets he’ll miss out on ice cream after tee-ball later. Dell, on the other hand, makes his choice and waits for the ice cream. When Pete shares his frustration and asks him how he can wait, Dell shares some of the strategies — cool tricks — he uses to deal with temptation: he walks away; he imagines gummy bugs and worms as alive; and he distracts himself by playing a game, drawing or reading. Readers will enjoy watching the the boys figure this out on their own, without the help of adults.
Teresa Martinez’s lively and colorful illustrations make this story a very entertaining read. The characters’ expressions are perfect!
Resources: The book is a resource. But make sure you check out the Reader’s Note at the back of the book.
Dan Graham, PhD, is a faculty member in applied social and health psychology at Colorado State University. His research focuses on promoting healthy eating and physical activity. You can follow him on Twitter @dangrahambooks.