Amelia Bedelia's First Day of School

illus. by Lynne Avril. 32p. (Amelia Bedelia). ebook available. HarperCollins/Greenwillow. 2015. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9780061544552; lib. ed. $17.89. ISBN 9780061544569; pap. $6.99. ISBN 9780061544576. LC 2008037455.
PreS-Gr 2—Returning with her pun-filled humor and misunderstandings of certain expressions, Amelia Bedelia has her first day of school in this adventure. Her day is full of confusion—she thinks her teacher is playing tag when she tries to give her a nametag, and Amelia doesn't understand that she is supposed to say her name when roll is called. During craft time, Amelia's teacher tells her to glue herself to her seat, which she literally does. When Amelia is the only child left, Miss Edwards admits that it's her first day of school as well, which emphasizes the theme that it's okay to be nervous about new experiences. Children will laugh at Amelia Bedelia's antics, and in many cases, the illustrations enhance the text's humor. Not all of the jokes are explained, which gives parents and caregivers an opportunity to explain the sayings or children a chance to figure them out on their own. Young readers will relate to the emotions that Amelia feels, including enthusiasm for all of her activities and confusion about what she is supposed to be doing. The plot is cohesive, the characters are fully developed, and this book is comparable to other Amelia Bedelia titles by Herman Parish, but humor aside, it may not stand out in the broader field of children's literature.
VERDICT Purchase where "Amelia Bedelia" books are popular or where additional back to school books are needed.

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