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All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten

4.03  ·  Rating details ·  20,583 ratings  ·  938 reviews
Robert Fulghum engages with musings on life, death, love, pain, joy, sorrow, and the best chicken-fried steak in the continental United States. The little seed in the Styrofoam cup offers a reminder about our own mortality and the delicate nature of life . . . a spider who catches (and loses) a full-grown woman in its web one fine morning teaches us about surviving catastr ...more
Paperback, 240 pages
Published May 4th 2004 by Ballantine Books (first published September 1st 1988)
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Average rating 4.03  · 
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 ·  20,583 ratings  ·  938 reviews


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Fergus
Oct 09, 2018 rated it liked it
When an angry mom defends her first child, folks listen!

Back when I was still not past five, I started Grade One. I remember so vividly the first day...

Grade One was gonna be tough, and the first Day of it was so inauspicious - a bleak day in January.

JANUARY, you say?

Correct.

You see, I had started Kindergarten the previous September, but my mom had insisted to Dad that I was too smart for mere extended playtime.

Of course, she was right in a way - because I had a January birth date - but ONLY
...more
Raymond
May 28, 2009 rated it liked it
I am not sure this book is important to me. But I will tell you this - one of the most delightful things I had read in a long time, and a thing I have tried to memorize, is Fulghum's wonderful list:

"Share everything.
Play fair.
Don't hit people.
Put things back where you found them.
Clean up your own mess.
Don't take things that aren't yours.
Say you're sorry when you hurt somebody.
Wash your hands before you eat.
Flush.
Warm cookies and cold milk are good for you.
Live a balanced life - learn some and th
...more
Roy
Mar 20, 2008 rated it liked it
When I read this book years ago, my first thought was that it would make an excellent Christmas gift for anyone who I couldn't figure out what else to get. The simple philosophy of living that it promotes and the author's easy going style of prose would elicit a smile from a stone. I can't quite say that it changed my life, but I was certainly charmed by this book. It also taught me a lesson in the money making potential of publishing because I happened to work for Ballantine at the time and was ...more
Jessaka
Wisdom of the Ages

I thought that this book would be dorky; It was anything but. Also, It is not just about things you learned in kindergarten, it also has anecdotes that are so wonderfully charming that I will read them again and again. In fact, I want to read every book he wrote. It does begin with things that we were taught in kindergarten, and it is a pretty short list since 5-year old don’t have long attention spans:

1. Share everything
2. Play fair
3. Don’t hit people
4. Put things back where
...more
Maegan
Aug 20, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Essentially the GREATEST book I've ever read. I loved the humor, but it also expressed hidden truths that integrate themselves into our day to day lives in a quirky sort of way. I thoroughly enjoyed the insight that you received through out the entirety of the book. Made me think about things...lots of things. Mr. Fulghum reminds me a lot of, well, ME.
I thought it was stunning.
Kaethe Douglas
1990 Jul 30

Fulghum is chock full of advice on how to be a decent person and enjoy your life.

***

2020 June 6

This was an excellent choice for me right now. I needed some positivity. And very short essays ate so doable, even when I have the attention span of a litter of 10 week old puppies. There have been many distracting events of late. Sometimes real life doesn't feel so real when you are living through multiple history-making events simultaneously.
I am, and want to remain, grateful to the Fulghu
...more
Laura
Aug 16, 2007 rated it did not like it
Shelves: non-fiction
The only people who learned all they needed to know in kindergarten are the people who died when they were six. This stupid book is as facile as its title.
Apple Nocom
Dec 12, 2012 rated it did not like it
Shelves: do-not-recommend
So, I don't understand why this is a New York Times best-seller? To each his own, then. But to me, this book felt like a venue for the author to explain away his own mulling. The title is "All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten";
(a) and it sounds like an excuse to be a bit too childish and simplistic
(b) but hardly any of the book is about things he really learned in Kindergarten.

I don't know. I'm just really confused, annoyed, and disappointed.
Ellie
Jan 25, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
The first time I read this book, I found it annoying: I called it trite. It seemed too simple. But on continuing to think about it and rereading parts of it, I decided it deserved better than two stars. Maybe the truest lessons in life are learned early on and we just forget them or run over them in our desires for success or to fit in or out of our many fears.

I guess the current political/social climate has made me take these lessons less for granted. They are ideals for which we need to conti
...more
Marie
Nov 20, 2011 rated it really liked it
I find it funny that so many people who reviewed this book made comments about the title. Why on earth does the title really matter? I know I have read hundreds of books with odd titles, but I did not base my review on it.

This book was easy to read - I read it in one rainy afternoon. I did not pick this book up to find the answers of life - I read it because it seemed light and fun - which it was.

I feel the book is very cool - hundreds of times I have thought random, misc. thoughts and told myse
...more
Jinky
Aug 18, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2010
I've found reading adult non-fiction books to be a tedious read because it involves many facts. I finally gave up on one that I've had for almost a month because telling me every detail history of her relatives just got too much and it looked like she wasn't going to let up! But this book had nothing tedious about it. It had me chuckling through the entire book. It was sooooo easy to turn from one page to the next and time just flew by. I would have been disappointed that it ended but Mr. Fulghu ...more
Julie Rylie
“These are the things I learned (in Kindergarten):

1. Share everything.
2. Play fair.
3. Don't hit people.
4. Put thngs back where you found them.
5. CLEAN UP YOUR OWN MESS.
6. Don't take things that aren't yours.
7. Say you're SORRY when you HURT somebody.
8. Wash your hands before you eat.
9. Flush.
10. Warm cookies and cold milk are good for you.
11. Live a balanced life - learn some and drink some and draw some and paint some and sing and dance and play and work everyday some.
12. Take a nap every after
...more
Michael
Jul 30, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction, humor, essays
As suggested by the title, the lessons children can or should be getting in kindergarten make a great focus for adult living. Imagine how precepts like playing fair and not taking things that don't belong to you could resonate beyond childhood into sphere of politics and moral behavior. The rule of "cleaning up your own mess" or "putting things back where you found them" make a good foundation for clean ecological living. My favorite is "When you go out, watch out for traffic, hold hands, and st ...more
Sasha
Nov 25, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
This novel was the first my boyfriend ever gave to me. We had been dating for 2 weeks when his family invited me down to celebrate Christmas with them. As a Jew, I had not celebrated Christmas before, and I was nervous about that cultural difference, as well as what to get everyone, these strangers I had not yet met, and what they would think of me, this vegetarian, anemic, sailor-mouthed girl so unlike their son whose main aspiration in life was to teach kindergarten (whereas he was studying to ...more
Leftbanker
Aug 27, 2010 rated it did not like it
Shelves: religion
This is a veiled swipe at anyone who has bothered to actually continue learning since age five. It’s another brick in the wall of pop culture that makes people feel good about the fact that they are stupid motherfuckers who have never worked hard to develop their minds. What they are saying is, “It’s OK to be quasi-literate; everyone else is just like you.” Everyone except the adults sitting around the dinner table of life. I’ll admit that I’m sort of a dumb shit but it’s not from lack of trying ...more
K.D. Absolutely
Apr 15, 2009 rated it liked it
Shelves: humour
Funny and witty. I like the short anecdotes that support those learnings in kindergarten. I still remember one: "When crossing the street, hold each other hands" This is very true especially in the crazy streets of Manila.
Gul
Dec 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
A lovely feel-good quick-read essay book that inspires you and often makes you laugh and smile while teaching a lot about everyday stuff. The book stirs your soul with Fulghum narrating his day to day experiences in a casual & jovial manner. ...more
Alexandra
Sep 15, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
7/12/19 on sale for Kindle for $1.99.
Vishal Khatri
Oct 16, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ebook
"Anything worth doing is worth doing well. Anything not worth doing is worth not doing well."
Sara
Jun 03, 2019 rated it liked it
Read this years ago and recall liking it.
Lino  Matteo
Jul 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten
Robert Fulghum
Copyright 2003


Notes:
Vi: Storyteller’s License: This license gives me permission to use my imagination in rearranging my experience to improve a story…
As it stands, the book seems like a final form.
Storyteller’s Creed is an example
I believe that imagination is stronger than knowledge
That myth is more potent than history
That dreams are more powerful than facts
That hope always triumphs over experience
That laughter is the only cure f
...more
Jaideep Khanduja
Oct 28, 2012 rated it it was amazing
http://pebbleinthestillwaters.blogspo...

Book Review: All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten by Robert Fulghum


All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten - Robert Fulghum
Surprise 1: The book is listed at MS
Surprise 2: There is only 1 review on such a marvelous book till date

Before coming to the contents and other details of this book, let me create an atmosphere by phrasing some basic facts (and some queries), you are free to agree or disagree on each point:1. You will be bli
...more
Kris
Feb 27, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned-books
This was a reread of a book I read when it first came out. It is a bit simple, occasionally bordering on too simplistic, but really, it is just a nice read with a couple of good reminders when you need to feel better about life. Fulghum reminds me of my dad. That's a good thing.
Malbadeen
Jul 16, 2007 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: hippies & cultivated garden haters
the lecture series that accompanies this book can be called: how I will display my self actualization to judge your lawn care habits.
I don't remember much about this book except the over all sense that the author was pretty pleased with himself. I remember one part where he talked about his carefree acceptance of natures impression on his yard by explaining how silly his neighbor was to rake his leaves and mow the lawn.
I didn't do a ton of gardening at the time (nor do I now) but I remember thi
...more
Cecil
Feb 26, 2008 rated it liked it
Shelves: timeless-books
As a person who never went to kindergarten--look, it was a small rural community and my parents needed help in the grist mill--I decided that buying this book was not an option for me. The logical corollary of the title is that, lacking a kindergarten education, my BSBA, MBA and JD combined could not save me. Clearly, I knew nothing of what I REALLY needed to know. From the book, I learned that I should be nice to the other children, share my stuff, be quiet sometimes, and always take a nap. Sag ...more
Pandora
Jul 02, 2008 rated it liked it
Shelves: adult
I had to add this book after seeing it on the worst book list. Come on. It wasn't meant to be Les Mes or even a John Steinbeck. It was meant to be a happy book that helps you remember that it is and can be a good world out there. Which is needed after Neal Shusterman - a great author but, perhaps too good. See Unwind review - this book was used as an antidote.

I did learn that sometimes it is the simple things that make life good. It is bettter to let go of our pride, judgements and just be in mo
...more
Louize
Jul 12, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites

I’ve been chewing on this book for a month. Trying to read and absorb it gradually; and never wanting it to end. Yes, I was hooked.

Robert Fulghum wrote his journal-type stories in a very honest, child-like manner that it will capture you both in wonder and profound realization. It is amazing to know how our everyday life may be improved if we but apply things we already learned as a child. Life can be more meaningful, indeed, if we just stop worrying a lot and enjoy the simple things it offers.
...more
sarafem
Mar 07, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2008, memoirs
This is more of a 3 1/2 stars book; I have never wanted to read this book, but I bought it at a yard sale for a nickel and this morning I wanted something light that I could read while sitting in the doctor's office for. ever. I got the whole thing read, and frankly, it was a good book. Not at all the drivel I expected, based on the uproar made about this book by absolutely vapid people.

I'm a big fan of "the little things" and silver linings. That is what this book is about - finding life lesson
...more
Greg
Nov 13, 2010 rated it really liked it
All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten was Fulghum's first collection of essays. I liked his style then, and still do. His writing reminds me of Mayberry...it evokes a sort of down-home feeling that brings to mind warm apple pie cooling on an open window sill, children playing on lazy summer afternoons, and neighborly conversations over backyard fences. Fulghum does a nice job of exploring simple things from a profound and thoughtful perspective to gently guide the reader to wisdom. ...more
Paiman Chen
Jul 03, 2012 rated it it was amazing
All I really need to know I learned in kindergarten. Wisdom was not at the top of the graduate-school mountain.

1. Share everything
2. Play fair
3. Don't hit people
4. Put things back where you found them
5. Clean up your own mess
6. Don't take things that aren't yours
7. Say you're sorry when you hurt somebody
8. Wash your hands before you eat
9. Flush ....
10.Warm cookies, cold milk are good for you
11.Live a balanced life- learn some, think some, draw,paint,sing,dance, play,work everyday some
12.
...more
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Effects on Children of Kindergarten As the New First Grade 1 3 Sep 20, 2019 02:06AM  
Kindergarten 1 6 Feb 01, 2017 09:20PM  

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Robert Fulghum is an American author, primarily of short essays.

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“I believe that imagination is stronger than knowledge. That myth is more potent than history. That dreams are more powerful than facts. That hope always triumphs over experience. That laughter is the only cure for grief. And I believe that love is stronger than death.” 9018 likes
“These are the things I learned (in Kindergarten):

1. Share everything.
2. Play fair.
3. Don't hit people.
4. Put things back where you found them.
5. CLEAN UP YOUR OWN MESS.
6. Don't take things that aren't yours.
7. Say you're SORRY when you HURT somebody.
8. Wash your hands before you eat.
9. Flush.
10. Warm cookies and cold milk are good for you.
11. Live a balanced life - learn some and drink some and draw some and paint some and sing and dance and play and work everyday some.
12. Take a nap every afternoon.
13. When you go out into the world, watch out for traffic, hold hands, and stick together.
14. Be aware of wonder. Remember the little seed in the Styrofoam cup: The roots go down and the plant goes up and nobody really knows how or why, but we are all like that.
15. Goldfish and hamster and white mice and even the little seed in the Styrofoam cup - they all die. So do we.
16. And then remember the Dick-and-Jane books and the first word you learned - the biggest word of all - LOOK.”
985 likes
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