Don’t Trust Animal Characters to Teach Your Kids Morals

Yes, Frog and Toad Are Friends, but they aren’t moral authorities for your children. That’s the finding of a new, fun-spoiling study on little kids and picture books. It found that kids learned a lesson about sharing from a book with human characters—but not from a book about a cute raccoon.

Many children’s books, of course, feature animals that act like people. And anthropomorphized animals have been imparting moral lessons since the time of Aesop. Nicole Larsen and her colleagues at the

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