Reverse Kidology


I love books with owls in them. You know that video about the tiny owl enjoying a massage? It turned me into a sticky mess of mush and I had to physically force myself to stop watching it on repeat. I just think they’re adorable, epitomise wisdom and are pretty darn cool. Not only does Little Hoot by Amy Krouse Rosenthal and Jen Corace contain a very cute family of owls, it uses very sneaky reverse psychology to get your child into bed. Noted there are lots of books about that, not many have awesome owls in them!


So little hoot is a generally happy owl, except for bedtime. Why? All his other friends get to go to bed early. While he has to go to bed “late, late, late”, because otherwise, how would he get to be a wise owl? Duh!

Much as he grumbles, his parents don’t “give a hoot about what time” the other animals go to sleep. He manages to bargain them down to one more hour of play time. Exhaustingly, he gets through the next hour engaging in many tiresome play activities like jumping on his bed *yawn*, building a fort *meh* and playing swords *sheesh*.


When he finally skateboards through the final ten minutes, he hoots and hollers right into bed. Though his parents try to stall him with bedtime stories and drinks of water, he’s fast asleep.

Iris adored this book and after the second reading was saying before I’d got to the line “When I grow up, I’m going to let my friends (kids) go to bed as early as they want.” Then she would happily crawl under her covers and present her cheek for goodnight kissing.

On the whole, Iris has been absolutely lovely about going to bed. However, we have had a few harrowing weeks – at 2 months when I thought she didn’t need a routine; when we moved to Perth and she had to move into a bed from a cot (worst time ever); and when we were toilet training her. And I guarantee there isn’t one parent wouldn’t love a book that helps their kids go to bed without a fuss.

Unless you’re an owl that is.

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