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Nighty Night!
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by Margaret Wild
illustrated by Kerry Argent

As Nighty Night! Begins, the sun is setting and bedtime is approaching. Mother Sheep, Father Duck, Mother Hen, and Father Pig sound the familiar cry, calling their children to bed. One by one, each parent calls, "Nighty night" or a variation thereof. Each time, the loving parent is surprised to find that the brood he or she is ready to tuck into bed belongs to a different parent. The naughty baby animals are having great fun surprising their parents!

 

Eventually the confusion gets straightened out. Each parent lovingly puts his or her children to bed – but not without one final plea from each brood – kisses, water, and so on.

 

Margaret Wild successfully combines elements of surprise (the children's tricks) with the predictability of bedtime routines and "just one more thing." She portrays the children's glee and the parents' loving patience with equal finesse. Kerry Argent's water color illustrations beautifully personify the characters – the parents' astonishment, chiding and love as well as the naughty children's laughter, mortification at being chided and sleepy-eyed contentment.

 

Mums, Dads and children everywhere will identify with Nighty Night!

 

Wild, Margaret. 2000. Nighty night! Illustrated by Kerry Argent. Atlanta, GA: Peachtree. Originally published in Australia (ABC Books, 2000).

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