This Is a School

Candlewick. Mar. 2022. 40p. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9781536204582.
PreS-Gr 3–Librarian, blogger, and children’s books superstar Schu gives young readers a glimpse into the community life of a school. The book opens with a single student, from a single class that goes out into a single hallway, and shows readers a school teeming with life. Students who sometimes feel as if they don’t understand, get the help they need from a teacher or a friend. The student who is excited to learn something new gets to pass on that new knowledge to others. And the student who makes a particularly poor decision finds an adult who’s ready to problem solve. Through all of the growth, celebration, and transformation, this is a school community that works together. Using simple, declarative sentences and patterning throughout, this text is well suited for both independent reading as well as a read aloud. The mixed media illustrations (watercolor, acrylic, and digital) are vibrant, showcasing students of multiple ethnicities, genders, and abilities. Dominated by muted or cool colors in the background, the active learning of students and teachers is brought to the forefront. Full spread illustrations showing the whole community mix with smaller, more intimate portrayals of kids and adults hard at work, providing strong movement throughout the story.
VERDICT This is a solid choice for classrooms and libraries looking for updated beginning of the year or school stories.

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