Author: Roald Dahl

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5 Life Lessons from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

July 23, 2014 Book Review, reviews 17

5 Life Lessons from Charlie and the Chocolate FactoryCharlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl
Published by Puffin Genres: Children
Pages: 155
Source: complimentary review copy
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Charlie and the Chocolate Factory is one of those timeless classics that teaches life lessons through the unique set characters, especially our protagonist Charlie.  Charlie has every problem in the world it seems like between not enough food, inappropriate clothing and a house way to small for a family of seven.

He has always inspired me – both the movie version that I saw many many years ago and the novel that I’ve only just recently read.  Charlie shows that hope and optimism spring eternal.  While he had nothing – not enough food, heat, shelter, and certainly not chocolate from the beloved Willy Wonka Factory – Charlie maintained his sense of hope.  We don’t hear of him complaining about his grumbling tummy while the kids around him are opening their daily chocolate bars nor does he bemoan the cold while watching others who are bundled to their ears walking into the candy store.

Five Life Lessons We Can Learn From Charlie

There’s No Room for Envy.  Although Charlie has every right to be jealous of all the other children around him according to modern-day standards, we don’t see him comparing himself to those more fortunate nor do we get the sense that he does so.  Charlie is a good, sweet, loving boy.  Jealousy would simply muck that up and makes a good person become all icky.  Instead, Charlie focuses on himself and his family.  That’s one lesson I keep reminding myself to live by, especially in the blogosphere when someone always has more ____ {stats, reviews, followers, clout and Klout, more, more, more}.  As long as I focus on myself then I don’t get caught up in the envy cycle.

Love One Another.  Charlie is the absolute delight of his family.  He shares his annual birthday chocolate and always spends evenings soaking up the stories from his grandparents.

But as soon as they heard the door opening, and heard Charlie’s voice saying “Good evening, Grandpa Joe and Grandma Josephine and Grandpa George and Grandma Georgiana,” then all four of them would suddenly sit up, and their wrinkled old faces would light up with smiles of pleasure.  Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.

Spend Quality Time With Family.  In this crazy busy world we get so caught up in it is way too easy to forget there are those in our lives who want and need our undivided attention.  Just as our children need a parent’s attention, parents also need attention from their children.  Although I am an adult with grown children of my own, I am reminded that I need to spend more time with my mom, just one-on-one.

Keep that Child’s Sense of Wonder.  Watching my grandson get so excited about holding a fuzzy caterpillar reminds me to see the joy and beauty with awe-like fascination.  Being a grown-up means bills, responsibility, bills, jobs, bills. . .did I mention bills?  It’s so easy to forget or lose that sense of wonder.  Spend time with a toddler in nature for an hour and you’ll get a sense of that awe once again.  Every week when I keep The Little Monkey I’m reminded.

Gratitude is a Most Beautiful Thing.  Charlie is grateful.  He cherishes the birthday chocolate he receives yet still tries to share with his family.  When Willy Wonka gives Charlie a bar of chocolate his gratitude is palpable.  Gratitude goes such a long way.  Look at Charlie – he was so grateful for one bar of chocolate that he ended up with a whole entire chocolate factory!

Have I missed any lessons Charlie taught us?

 Share with me in the comments your favorite Charlie and the Chocolate Factory Lesson!

This post was inspired by the classic Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl, which celebrates its 50th anniversary this year. To celebrate, Penguin Young Readers Group, in partnership with Dylan’s Candy Bar, the world-famous candy emporium, and First Book, a nonprofit social enterprise that provides books for children from low-income families, is launching a year-long international celebration.

Head on over to From Left to Write to learn how you and your child have a chance to win the Golden Ticket Sweepstakes where the grand prize is a magical trip to New York City plus much more!  For every entry submitted, Penguin Young Readers Group will make a donation to First Book.   Then join From Left to Write on July 24th as we discuss all things Willy Wonka!  As a book club member, I received a copy for review purposes.

 

 

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