Select one of the keywords
On the First Day of Grade School    by Emily Brenner & Bruce Whatley order for
On the First Day of Grade School
by Emily Brenner
Order:  USA  Can
HarperCollins, 2004 (2004)

Read an Excerpt

* *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

Emily Brenner joins the long line of versifiers who have re-written The Twelve Days of Christmas for different contexts. In this very funny version, grade school students bring their bemused and harried teacher a series of animal gifts. Bruce Whatley's illustrations add to the humor, beautifully capturing both the teacher's reactions and the hilarious antics of all the beasties.

It begins, 'On the first day of grade school, / my students gave to me / A python / that didn't squeeze me'. Though it never does squeeze the teacher, that python becomes the centerpiece of classroom activity for the next eleven eclectic days. Next come 'Two buzzing bees', 'Three fat rats', 'Four burping goats' ... you get the idea. I especially liked the 'Seven skating monkeys' (some in pink tutus) and felt for the teacher when the skunks showed up.

Very silly and a lot of fun, On the First Day of Grade School is just what's needed to take the edge of kids' back-to-school anxiety. And they can sing along as the pages turn, too.

Note: Opinions expressed in reviews and articles on this site are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of BookLoons.

Find more Kids books on our Shelves or in our book Reviews