Reading/Interest Level: Primary
Author: Robin Mellom
Illustrator: Stephen Gilpin
Publisher: Disney Hyperion
This is a collection of verse sharing the thoughts of six elementary school children as they approach the first day of school. They express their thoughts the night before, the morning of, the day in class, and their arrival home. Each child has a unique perspective on what it will be like. Almost all wonder if they will make new friends and see old ones. They describe their impressions of the teachers and what happens during the day then off to home they go.
This is a great book for the first day of school, but it doesn't have enough depth to become a year-round re-read. The verse shares the perspective of each child but doesn't really delve into emotional issues or fears that a child might have going to school on the first day. Although these topics are not a topic of the text, this book would be a good way to open discussion with school-aged children about what they expect and what concerns they may have. The illustrations are simple with simple color usage, almost as if drawn by an elementary grade student. There is sophistication to the layout that belies the professional nature of the work without distracting from the voice of the poetry. This is a solid book, but is not likely to leave the shelf more than once a year.