Yes, the first time I heard this book was when I was a mere five years old. My Montessori kindergarten teacher also read to us Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator that year. These two Roald Dahl books that both feature Charlie Bucket as their main character are a classic part of kid lit that should be shared for generations to come. Even as a kid, I could think of people who were similar to each one of the characters. And sadly, as a teacher, I still see them as adults. There is a part of you that always hopes that by reading books about spoiled brats, parents may get a clue, but no. We still have the whiny Veruca Salts who get everything they want by throwing a tantrum. The Augustus Gloops continue to stuff themselves with junk food (although that is slowly changing). I still see some loud Violet Beauregardes who yell and chomp on their gum. And the Mike Teavees of this world have expanded to include kids with DVD players in their cars and who take over their parents iPads and iPhones.
Charlie Bucket is the kind of kid we should all aspire to be. He comes from a large family that cares for each other. The four grandparents live under the same leaky roof as the parents and Charlie. They work hard to scrimp and save for just barely enough to eat. They may get frustrated, but they appreciate the gifts that they do receive. Charlie is sincere and trustworthy. He tries to follow the rules, even if he messes up here and there. He is just a very sweet kid. I was always kind of attached to him.