Thursday, July 5, 2012

Read to me challenge book 10 : First Day Jitters

Today's review is First Day Jitters    By author: Julie Danneberg    Illustrated by: Judy Love
ISBN: 978-1-58089-054-0    Ages: 5-9

Synopsis:( Taken from Charlesbridge)
Everyone knows that sinking feeling in the pit of the stomach just before diving into a new situation. Sarah Jane Hartwell is scared and doesn't want to start over at a new school. She doesn't know anybody, and nobody knows her. It will be awful. She just knows it. With much prodding from Mr. Hartwell, Sarah Jane reluctantly pulls herself together and goes to school. She is quickly befriended by Mrs. Burton, who helps smooth her jittery transition. This charming and familiar story will delight readers with its surprise ending.

Fun, energetic illustrations brighten page after page with the busy antics surrounding Sarah Jane. First Day Jitters is an enchanting story that is sure to be treasured by anyone who has every anticipated a first day of school. 
"I'm not going," said Sarah, and pulled the covers over her head. "of course you're going honey,"  said Mr. Hartwell, as he walked over to the window and snapped the shade.

Why I like this book:
This picture book is  a must for every teacher. I read it every year on the first day of school. I love how Julie Danneberg tells this delightful story from the perspective of the teacher. When I bought this book I knew that the character was nervous about the first day of school but I had no idea until the end that the character who did not want to go to school was the TEACHER!  She imagines the worst but at the end she realizes it was not so bad. I loved how this book explores the feelings that children may feel about going to a school for the first time or maybe moving to a new school and not knowing anyone.  This book allowed for great conversation about feelings the first day of school brings out in all of us ... even teachers.

Critique from 502:
First of all, Judy Love did a fantastic job creating the book's cover. The cat on head made them laugh and I hadn't even read the book yet. They loved the interaction between the cat and the dog .As the story unfolds, her hilarious illustrations captures the imagination that is going on in Sarah's head. My second graders were so surprised by the ending.  The look on their faces when they found out that Sarah was the teacher was priceless. Wow! This book got a "Will you read it again?" and a clap. When my class claps this is a sign that they loved the book. So critics from 502 give this book a thumbs up! 


  1. What a interesting twist and what a perfect choice for the first day of school. I recently read a similar pb called Snow Day! by Lester Laminack where the characters are anticipating the upcoming "snow day" and the father turns out to be the teacher.

    1. I haven't read that one, I'll have to check it out. Thanks Jennifer.

  2. What a fun book, Cheryl! I can relate. There were some days I as a teacher did not want to face a classroom of kids...clever. I love surprise endings.

    1. Me too! I've had plenty of those days. Thanks for stopping by Jarm.
      Happy reading and writing!

  3. This sounds so cute! I have to read it now. Thumbs up from a class of second graders sounds like a good recommendation to me! :)

  4. Thanks for stopping by, so glad you enjoyed my review!