Monday, July 13, 2009

Junie B's Essential Survival Guide to School


Park, Barbara. 2009. Junie B's Essential Survival Guide to School. Random House.

It's been a year or two since Junie B, now in first grade, made an appearance. And I for one have missed her troublesome lovable ways. But she's back. And just as rowdy and outspoken as ever. This book isn't in the traditional format. It's not a chapter book. It's a slightly interactive 'journal.' This little book by Junie B herself is full of "advice" for children on how to survive school. These little snippets of advice reveal Junie B's personality, of course, and share a few smallish stories.

Here is Junie B's advice on backpacks:

The FIRST thing you need for school is a BACKPACK.
BACKPACK is the grown-up word for a PACK THAT YOU CARRY ON YOUR BACK.
It is like being a mule, sort of.
Only I am NOT a mule.
I am just a child.
I would rather pull my stuff to school in a pack wagon.
But stores do not sell pack wagons.
Someone should look into this matter, I believe.

There are a jillion kinds of backpacks to choose from. Only it does not matter which backpack you really, really like. 'Cause your mother will buy the cheapest backpack in the store. And there is NOTHING you can do about that situation. On account of children do not have any actual money.

End of backpack story
As I mentioned some of her 'advice' reveals some of Junie B's troubles...

Rules of the Bus
Number 1

When your bus driver is driving the bus, do not jump up and start yelling, "Faster! Faster! Faster!"
I have had an actual experience with this rule. On account of one time I thought it would be amusing to yell FASTER. But my bus driver named Mr. Woo did not laugh.
Instead, he sent a bus note home to my parents. It was called. Bus Warning Number One. They did not get a kick out of it.


Of course, the rules continue--for the bus as well as the classroom, playground, and lunchroom.

There were many funny bits in this book. I liked Junie B's idea of having fun homework--jumping on the bed and eating lemon pie.

As I mentioned this one is slightly interactive. There are a handful of pages where kids can write and draw. It also includes a few pages of stickers.


© Becky Laney of Young Readers

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