SCHOOL—Come in and take a closer look

SYNOPSIS: Young readers will recognize themselves in this compassionate portrayal of school life. Few authors move as easily between the different worlds children inhabit as Britta Teckentrup. Whether she’s leading the littlest readers through the seasons, or exploring the science of bird feathers, Teckentrup’s warm and wonderfully detailed illustrations are a marvelous portal to feelings, facts, and fun. In her newest book, Teckentrup takes readers inside a busy school to follow different students through their day–in class, during free time, at lunch, and through swimming lessons. We come across a variety of faces and expressions that reflect the enormous range of emotions and experiences that each school day brings. There are arguments and hurt feelings, encouraging hugs and deeply felt smiles. The gentle text explores issues that we’ve all encountered–bullying and loneliness as well as friendship and achievement. While the school in this book could exist anywhere, every reader will find a piece of her or himself in its beautifully and sensitively wrought story.


MY THOUGHTS: Life in the sixth grade will look familiar. Diversity along with themes of friendship, family problems, and teachers who engage students in learning are in the forefront. The mostly full-page illustrations in this new hardcover tell the story as much as the accompanying text. They would look fantastic decorating the walls of any middle school.

Perfect as a read-aloud and discussion starter, SCHOOL would be a special gift to the important teacher in your life.

OPENING LINE: I’m in sixth grade. I’ll bet my school is like most others. Not good, not bad…just somewhere in between.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: BRITTA TECKENTRUP is the author and illustrator of dozens of well-loved books for children, including My Little Book of Big Questions, The Egg, and Birds and Their Feathers (all by Prestel). She lives in Berlin, Germany.


Blogging about middle grade books or authors next week? Join the celebration:

All you have to do is blog about a middle grade book on a Monday (contests, author interviews, or anything middle grade related also count). Email me the title of the book or feature and a link to your blog at gpcolo[at]gmail[dot]com
Make sure you put MMGM or Marvelous Middle Grade Monday in the subject line so it gets sorted accurately–and please don’t forget to say what book or author you’re featuring) You MUST email me your link by Sunday evening (11 PM Eastern Time) in order to be included in the list of links for the coming Monday.
Thanks for spreading the middle grade love and for being a part of this awesome tradition begun by Shannon Messenger and carried on here at ALWAYS in the MIDDLE! (CLICK HERE FOR PAST MMGM POSTS)
*Please note: these posts are not a reflection of my own opinions on the books featured. Each blogger is responsible for their own MMGM content and I do not pre-screen reviews ahead of time, nor do I control what books they choose. I simply assemble the list based on the links that are emailed to me.

About Greg Pattridge

Climbing another mountain...always striving to reach the next peak in my life and career.
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4 Responses to SCHOOL—Come in and take a closer look

  1. Sixth grade! How did any of us survive it? This sounds like something that would be great in the classroom. Thanks for your review.

  2. What an interesting novel. Sixth grade is so very different today. So much more pressure.
    I loved sixth grade because we were still in elementary school (not middle school) and the kids looked up to us. It was that in between time when I felt powerful before I started junior high school. .

  3. Hmm, sounds rather lessony. Did you feel that way?

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