When you’re young and small, how the heck are you supposed to figure out what goes on in the big wide world? When you’re mostly exposed to the routines of your own family, how are you supposed to figure out what other folks are up to? By reading a book that explains what people do all day, of course. With his classic cast of animals making up Busytowns society, Richard Scarry presents a book that will teach children everything they need to know about daily life.
What Is ‘What Do People Do All Day’ About?
What isn’t it about would be a better question. The book is broken up into various sections that explain just about every facet of society. Examples of section titles and subjects include:
- Everyone is a worker.
- Building a new house.
- Mailing a letter.
- A visit to the hospital.
- The story of seeds and how they grow.
It may sound tedious (it is after all, 64 pages) but somehow Richard Scarry works the magic of Busytown and makes it fascinating. He exposes children to just about everything they’re curious about, even things they didn’t know they were curious about. There’s a trove of knowledge in this book, not just for kids, adults might find themselves learning something new as well.
The illustrations are drawn in the manner that Richard Scarry draws all of his characters-hard to describe, but familiar once you see it. Now the pictures are vital. If all Mr. Scarry did was explain day to day life and different jobs, only showing the citizens of Busytown executing each action, it would be easy to get lost when explaining more in depth things. As it is, he labels just about every item and object so that kids can track whatever is going on, and pick up a visual aid. For example, in the section ‘building a house’ the hot water heater is labeled, the furnace is labeled, the cold air return, hot air duct, fuel tank, sand, cement, bricks, mortar, water pipes are all labeled.
The way all the pictures come together is really impressive-and fascinating- in the most friendly, jolly way possible.
A Word About The Abridged Version
The original version of What Do People Do All Day? Was 90 some pages long. In the abridged version, much is cut out, resulting in a book that is only 64 pages long. Why this was done, I haven’t the slightest.
I think this is a great book. I used to sneak around my neighbor’s house and spy on them when I was super young. Scarry, huh? But I was curious, insatiably so, (and obviously I didn’t understand boundaries.) Now if I had had this book, who knows, I may never have had to deal with my sixty some year old neighbor telling me to get out of his garden.
But even if you child isn’t busting out of the house and spying on the neighbors, I would recommend this book. It’s a lovely, interesting, way to teach them about the workings of the world.
We Want to Know: What Do You Do All Day?