Jellybean goes to School by Margaret Roc and Laura Hughes
Random House Australia. Tamarind Imprint, 2013. ISBN 9781848530751.
(Age: 3-5) Highly recommended. Like many other little people around this time of the year, Beena (known to her family as Jellybean) is so excited about starting school and has been looking forward tremendously to learning to read and write, and finding out about the world and its wonders.
When the great day arrives, she is up early and dressed in her new uniform and shiny new shoes - ready for anything. That is until she actually walks through the school gate with her mum, when she is assailed by sudden trepidation. Maybe school isn't such a good idea, Jellybean worries.
With reassurance from Mum and gentle encouragement from her kind teacher Miss Benson, Jellybean and her new friend Alex both discover during their first day that school can be a marvellous place.
The delightful illustrations in this book are particularly enhanced by a lively choice of colours. The double page spreads with Jellybean's imaginative thoughts partnered with the activity of the moment are simply gorgeous and will make any little person enthused about the possibilities for themselves. I particularly like the diversity of children shown in the playground and classroom, with Jellybean herself clearly not 'Anglo'.
Whether you have Kinder kids of your own, preschoolers anticipating 'big school' or as a read-on-the-first-day choice to assuage any anxieties, this is a terrifically appealing book.
Perfect for Miss Four and definitely going on her bookshelf, this is highly recommended for your littlies from 3-5 years.