A woman with a magic way of curing children's bad habits tries her hand with a bully, a whisperer, and a slowpoke and formulates cures for a show-off and a crybaby. Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle loves all children, but she is realistic enough to know that they must be cured of misbehavior and bad habits. Her cures are refreshingly old-fashioned-let the child who won't bathe not bathe until there is enough dirt on her skin in which to plant radish seeds. Sendak illustrated the first of these adventures-Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle's Farm-but Knight's comic drawings splendidly decorate three of the four available, including Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle and Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle's Magic.
Reading Level: 4.6
This is a cute tale of a jolly old lady with magical cures for children's annoying habits. This would be a great book to read with a class for fun or to talk about character changes.
Because of many of her ideas being comical, many students find much interest in the book. The book is broken up into short stories that are only a few pages long. The chunking of the text is good for younger students so they do not become frustrated. The language in the paragraphs is very easy to read, except for some of the made up words she uses.
Most of the ideas in the book are relatable to the students and they may be experiences they are having at home. For example, not wanting to share toys with a younger siblings, not want to eat their peas, or not wanting to get a bath at night. Students read a short story about Mrs. Piggle Wiggle being called and having a solution for the problem, students may realize eating their peas are not that big of a deal.
This book is a classic laugh. I love the connection she has with the children, and how she knows the perfect cures. The detail given to explain each problem child is lighthearted and amazing. I also like the crazy names for the characters.
1. This could be used for a creative writing assignment. They could write a story of a problem and decide on a crazy solution.
2. This could also be used as a lesson to introduce a bad behavior lesson.