The Big Block of Chocolate is a delightful tale that takes young readers through a brief yet eventful journey of a block of chocolate from purchase through to consumption. The original owner of the chocolate plans on saving her special treat all for herself but her pets have other ideas. Thankfully, despite the chocolate ending up a little worse for wear, it does not go to waste as the surprising ending has not only a delightful twist but a sweet message of sharing for younger readers.
The repetitive nature of the story will have your toes tapping and children chanting along with the reader while Christine Dale’s colourful and amusing illustrations will entice early readers. This is a popular story with children ages 3–6 but would also be appropriate for older readers who would be able recite the catchy rhyme and enjoy the personification of the animals in the story.
The naughtiness of the animals really appeals to young readers many of whom can identify closely with the idea of taking something they really want! This story is a firm favourite in our class of six and seven-year-olds.
Title: The Big Block of Chocolate
Author: Janet Slater
Illustrator: Christine Dale
Format: Picture book
Date of publication: 1984
Reviewer: Victoria Richardson
Position: Primary school teacher
School: Victory Primary School, Nelson