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From the Little Boost series

Though not a standout, this book fills a niche for those seeking titles dealing with this particular issue of character...

The titular little chick learns an important lesson about what behaviors need to be reported and which to just let slide.

Jones’ newest picture book continues in the vein of some of her previous work with social-emotional development (Lacey Walker, Nonstop Talker, 2014, etc.). Here, Miles McHale is a member of a classroom populated by softly illustrated anthropomorphic wild animals of diverse species led by a giraffe with the Dickensian name of Mrs. Snitcher. Tattle-telling has become an issue in the classroom, and Mrs. Snitcher challenges her charges to a “Tattle Battle,” in which the team with the fewest tattles at the end of the week wins. Tattling is here defined as any concern that does not meet the following criteria: “If a friend is sick, hurt, or in harm’s way, / Then telling someone is OKAY.” Miles struggles to determine which events over the course of the week must be shared with an adult, including an accident with his little sister back at home. While the book does not address the issue at the heart of much tattling—the perception of injustice—it does offer some simple, easy-to-remember rhymes to help guide children toward appropriate sharing of concerns.

Though not a standout, this book fills a niche for those seeking titles dealing with this particular issue of character education . (Picture book. 4-7)

Pub Date: March 1, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-5158-0753-7

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Capstone Young Readers

Review Posted Online: Oct. 11, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 2016

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While this is a fairly bland treatment compared to Deborah Lee Rose and Carey Armstrong-Ellis’ The Twelve Days of...

Rabe follows a young girl through her first 12 days of kindergarten in this book based on the familiar Christmas carol.

The typical firsts of school are here: riding the bus, making friends, sliding on the playground slide, counting, sorting shapes, laughing at lunch, painting, singing, reading, running, jumping rope, and going on a field trip. While the days are given ordinal numbers, the song skips the cardinal numbers in the verses, and the rhythm is sometimes off: “On the second day of kindergarten / I thought it was so cool / making lots of friends / and riding the bus to my school!” The narrator is a white brunette who wears either a tunic or a dress each day, making her pretty easy to differentiate from her classmates, a nice mix in terms of race; two students even sport glasses. The children in the ink, paint, and collage digital spreads show a variety of emotions, but most are happy to be at school, and the surroundings will be familiar to those who have made an orientation visit to their own schools.

While this is a fairly bland treatment compared to Deborah Lee Rose and Carey Armstrong-Ellis’ The Twelve Days of Kindergarten (2003), it basically gets the job done. (Picture book. 4-7)

Pub Date: June 21, 2016

ISBN: 978-0-06-234834-0

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Harper/HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: May 3, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 2016

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From the Growing With Buddy series , Vol. 3

Making friends isn’t always this easy and convenient.

How do you make a new friend when an old one moves away?

Buddy (from Sorry, Grown-Ups, You Can’t Go to School, 2019, etc.) is feeling lonely. His best friend just moved across town. To make matters worse, there is a field trip coming up, and Buddy needs a bus partner. His sister, Lady, has some helpful advice for making a new pal: “You just need to find something you have in common.” Buddy loves the game Robo Chargers and karate. Surely there is someone else who does, too! Unfortunately, there isn’t. However, when a new student arrives (one day later) and asks everyone to call her Sunny instead of Alison, Buddy gets excited. No one uses his given name, either; they just call him Buddy. He secretly whispers his “real, official name” to Sunny at lunch—an indication that a true friendship is being formed. The rest of the story plods merrily along, all pieces falling exactly into place (she even likes Robo Chargers!), accompanied by Bowers’ digital art, a mix of spot art and full-bleed illustrations. Friendship-building can be an emotionally charged event in a child’s life—young readers will certainly see themselves in Buddy’s plight—but, alas, there is not much storytelling magic to be found. Buddy and his family are White, Sunny and Mr. Teacher are Black, and Buddy’s other classmates are racially diverse. (This book was reviewed digitally.)

Making friends isn’t always this easy and convenient. (Picture book. 4-7)

Pub Date: July 12, 2022

ISBN: 978-0-593-30709-0

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Random House

Review Posted Online: March 29, 2022

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15, 2022

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