Wednesday, June 14, 2023

Happy Book Birthday, Our Classroom Rules by Kallie George!

I'm in a celebration streak and ready to scream out another happy book birthday, today. This is a picture book for those young readers, who are going to hit the classroom for the first time in a couple months. I found the animals on the cover so friendly and, the title makes me believe there's going to be a play on words. I'm hoping this one doesn't get too preachy, but let's take a peek and see what it's about.

by Kallie George
Illustrated by Jay Fleck
Rodale Kids
Picture Book
32 pages
ages 3 to 7

From the creators of Our Playground Rules! comes this playful picture book about kindness and community in the classroom—a perfect read for back-to-school!

This picture book plays with the double meaning of "rules" to explore how following a few simple rules of kindness can make school time more fun for everyone! 

There are so many reasons why our classroom RULES!



The twist on words lets rules come across with natural fun...but then, this classroom really does rule in all the right ways.

It's the characters and their charisma, which invite in and make this classroom shine. While the text flows smoothly and explains why and how the animals get along (listening, lining up, sharing, etc), the illustrations bring each scene across with care, kindness, and a tiny bit of humor. These animals aren't perfect and do have little mishaps, but these aren't pointed out. Rather, the listener/reader sees them and can smile.

It's well done for the age group and brings across important, classroom lessons while not loading down. While a little direct, at times, this is quickly smoothed over as the excitement and joy of the animals constantly takes over. Listeners/readers will recognize familiar situations and details, making this a nice read aloud in classrooms, too. 

And here they are...

KALLIE GEORGE is an author, editor, and creative writing teacher. She has written numerous books for early readers, including the Anne chapter book series (Anne Arrives, Anne’s Kindred Spirits, Anne’s School Days), The Magical Animal Adoption Agency series, The Heartwood Hotel series, and The Wings of Olympus series, as well as numerous picture books, such as Goodnight, Anne, If I Couldn’t Be Anne, Merry Christmas, Anne, The Secret Fawn, and The Lost Gift. Kallie lives in Vancouver, BC.

JAY FLECK is a designer and illustrator of the picture books Double Take!, Black Belt Bunny and Everything You. He is also the author-illustrator of Tilly and Tank. He is based in Shorewood, IL


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