The 7 Habits of Happy Kids brings the internationally bestselling 7 Habits franchise to the youngest readers. The author, Sean Covey, has created short quirky stories for each of the 7 Habits. He successfully maintains the essence of the original book by his father, Stephen R. Covey, yet caters to the young readers in a manner which makes reading this book fun and truly a memorable experience.
The book is based on the experiences and adventures of friends who live in a small town known as 7Oaks. The book starts with the introduction of the kids who live at 7oaks – Goob Bear, Jumper Rabbit, Lily Skunk, Sammy Squirrel, Sophie Squirrel, Pokey Porcupine, Tagalong Allie and Ernie the Worm.
BORED! BORED! BORED!
Sammy Squirrel is bored and has nothing to do. He complains to his mother, who asks him to fix the gadgets, an activity he loves doing the most. But he is not up to it today. He decides to ask his sister Sophie but she is not home. He then goes to all his friend’s homes but does not find any fun activity to do.
Lastly, he goes to Tagalong Allie’s house and meets her granny. Tagalong Allie is not well so she is sleeping. Sammy tells granny that he is getting bored and none of his friends has any fun ideas. Granny tells Sammy that he himself is responsible for his happiness, not others. She asks Sammy to look around him and find some fun things to do. He need not go to others for fun. He looks around and finds an old radio with its wires sticking out in all directions lying abandoned on the garbage cans.
Sammy picks up the radio and starts working on it. By lunchtime, he fixes it and ties a ribbon around it. He gifts it to Tagalong Allie as a get-well-soon present.
BEGIN WITH THE END IN MIND
GOOB AND THE BUG-COLLECTING KIT
Goob wants to buy a bug-collecting kit but he does not have the required money. Goob goes home and makes a list of all that he wants to do with money. His friend Jumper stops by and Goob shows him his list. Together they decide to sell lemonade and earn some money. That afternoon they set up a lemonade stand.
By evening, they made twenty dollars. They divide the money and keep half each. Jumper spends his money on candies, bubble gum, popcorn and a few toys. Meanwhile, Goob checks his list and puts a dollar in the jar as a saving and purchases a bug-collecting kit, a present for a friend, a honey pizza, and still had two dollars left. Just as he was about to go for a movie, he sees Jumper. Jumper tells him about how he spent his money. Goob tells him that he should have planned ahead and made a list like him. Goob has an extra one dollar so he takes Jumper along for the movie.
PUT FIRST THINGS FIRST
POKEY AND THE SPELLING TEST
On Monday morning, Ms Hoot writes six words on the blackboard and announces a spelling test for Friday. Pokey goes home and sleeps. Sammy comes to his place and asks him if he would like to go to the dump and look for some gadgets. Pokey knows he has to study but going to the dump seems more interesting. Pokey finds a drum in the dump and happily plays it. He does not study the next day too thinking there is enough time. On Wednesday also he has lots of fun with his friends thinking there is still a lot of time to study for the spelling test. Finally, he sits down with the words on Thursday evening. He is not able to learn them at all. In the test, he gets only one spelling correct.
Ms. Hoot asks him about his performance and he tells how he kept finding other things to do and did not study for the test. She announces a re-test for Friday. This time Pokey prioritises his academics over other entertainment and performs well in the test.
LILY PLANTS A GARDEN
Lily Skunk wants to plant a garden but her mom tells her that planting a garden is too much of an effort. Lily promises to take care of the garden all by herself. Her mom is yet not convinced. At night Lily wakes up and writes a note to her mom which lists down all the responsibilities that she is ready to take for growing a garden and the things that mom gets from the garden.
Mom finds her plan a win-win deal and agrees on the garden. Lily keeps her promise with regards to the garden the entire summer and mom also helps her. Soon enough tiny vegetables and strawberries began to grow. At the time of harvest, they have fresh vegetables and strawberries from the garden and both Lily and mom are very happy.
SEEK FIRST TO UNDERSTAND, THEN TO BE UNDERSTOOD
JUMPER AND THE LOST BUTTERFLY NET
Jumper stops at Goob’s place one day and finds that he is sad. Goob has lost his butterfly net. Jumper tries to cheer him by asking him to play but Goob is still sad. Jumper feels bad and off he goes. On the way, he meets Tagalong Allie who is crying. Jumper enquires what happened. Allie mumbles her problem which Jumper doe s not understand even after repeated efforts. He takes Allie to Lily thinking she would be able to help. Lily quickly understands Allie’s problem and solves it. Jumper is amazed at how Lily could solve the problem so easily. Lily tells him that one needs to listen not just from ears but also heart and eyes. At this point Jumper realises that Goob was upset over something and he needs to find out why. He runs to Goob and asks the reason for his sadness.
Jumper, Allie and Goob get together and start searching for the butterfly net. After looking everywhere that Goob went since morning, they finally find it under the Oak tree.
THE BIG BAD BADGERS
The friends at the 7 Oaks often play at Uncle Bud’s Park. Today, while playing The Big Bad Badgers challenge them for a game of soccer. The friends are not up to it so they decide to go home but Sophie thinks that if they work as a team, they can beat them. She gathers and convinces all the friends for the game. Jumper is the only one trying to score a goal. The rest of the friends are busy with their own work. Jumper and Sophie then talk to their team of friends and tell them the importance of teamwork. They also tell them how to use their strengths to win the game. Finally, they give a tough fight to the Big Bad Badgers and win the game. They realise the importance of teamwork and synergizing their energies together.
SHARPEN THE SAW
Sophie is sleeping in the class while Ms Hoot is teaching. Sophie did not sleep well at night. On the way home, her brother Sammy teases her about reading at night instead of sleeping. At home, mom tells Sophie that reading is a great thing but she needs to balance other things in her life. Mom tells her about the importance of nourishing her heart, body and soul along with her brain. So Sophie plays with friends for a joyful heart, she paints with Lily and listens to music with Goob for her soul and goes cycling with Jumper for her body.
The short stories in The 7 Habits Of Happy Kids are very relatable and young readers can identify with the friends who live in 7Oaks. Their problems and problem-solving approach are very simple to understand. A highly recommended read.
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