I've just had a perusal of the Schleich Jan-June 2018 catalogue and honestly, something has really taken me aback.
The story in the middle of the book, I think is disgraceful.
I am a middle age man with a young boy and girl. I would not want them to read this story. Let me explain what I read/see.
1. The story starts with a group of friends and a secret headquarters with horses.
2. They go for something to eat and then a new girl appears called "Tori". I quote "The girls want to get rid of Tori."
3. Tori decides to follow the girls as clearly she feels excluded
4. The girls then come up with a plan to split up so she can't follow them.
5. They go to an animal shelter with a creepy looking guy that is clearly in on the act as all the girls play with puppies, but then Tori is given an extra demenial task of cleaning up poo.
6. Tori then wants to leave and looks upset while all the other girls have smiles and appear to be teasing her.
7. All the other girls then go to their secret headquarters without Tori
8. They then talk amongst each other (bitching) saying "We got rid of Tori!"
9. The story then ends, no resolution, no acceptance of Tori into the group, no compromise. Just basically belittling, demeaning, hurtful bitching.
What kind of lesson is Schleich trying to teach our children of age 5-12 ?! Questions it leaves me as a grown adult:
a. Why is Tori not liked and left/singled out?
b. Who is Tori ? Nowhere in the book does it describe her character - it describes the others.
c. Why did they not want Tori in their secret headquarters?
d. Why would they not accept her for who she is?
I personally think that children who play with toy animals are more introvert and thus this story would play to their own feelings and possible life experiences. It demonstrates that its acceptable to be left out of a group and there is no resolution other than more exclusion.
Honestly - I feel sick and I think its completely unacceptable of Schleich to feel this story, out of all the stories someone could make up for a magazine, is just not acceptable in modern day society.
Thoughts? Am I being over sensitive?