What is wrong with Nurse Penny?
Nurse Penny is a fantastic school nurse. She makes student patients feel better with a fist pump and a “Eureka!…We’ll banish this trouble in no time!” One day, however, when Max, Tessa and Van are awaiting treatment, they notice Nurse Penny’s usual smile has deserted her. They cheer her up, and that cheer gives her an idea that leads to a surprise all-school assembly about…lice. Nurse Penny lectures the whole school on lice: What they are, where they come from and how to get rid of them. She emphasizes that getting lice is not a sign of a dirty lifestyle and that anyone can get them…even a school nurse! She leaves to treat her problem, and on her return, Max and the other students have an artistic surprise for Nurse Penny. Though not nearly as ebullient as David Shannon’s Bugs in My Hair! (2013), Stier’s informational picture book is entertaining without being glib or foolish; it is an interesting-enough story as well as good instruction for prevention or bibliotherapy for those infected. Beaky’s expressive and bright cartoon illustrations, mostly full-bleed, feature a multicultural cast and complement the text nicely. A page of lice facts follows the story.
Might incite some sympathy scratching but worth inclusion in most collections. (Picture book. 4-7)