No Other Tale The Same: Eats, Shoots and Leaves

"A panda walks into the library. He eats a sandwich, then draws his bow and shoots two arrows.

'Why did you do that?' asks the librarian as the panda walks towards the exit.

The panda shows her a badly punctuated book.

'I'm a panda,' he says. 'That's what it says we do.' The librarian looks at the page:

PANDA
Large black-and-white bear-like mammal, native to China.
Eats, shoots and leaves."

Yes, this book is another one meant for children, yet several adults still need guidance on the proper usage of commas. When I taught English I would use this book at least once per year. It illustrates, in hilarious detail, what happens when you misplace a comma.


Here's one example:


One scenario involves the mother and child leaving Grandma and skipping about in the park. The other involves everyone skipping about in the park. Quite the difference!

Here's one more:


This one has to be my favorite. It's so rich visually for children to see how misplacing the comma makes the scenario completely unrealistic.

In my opinion, this book is a must-have for everyone, whether or not you are a teacher. As you can see, my post-it notes are well-worn from years of use. Eats, Shoots and Leaves also has an adult version which entails a good old-fashioned rant about how no one knows how to use commas. This kids' version gives a slightly more gentle approach. Start slow!