SCIENCE FAIR DAY

The latest in the series of picture books occurring in Mrs. Shepherd’s class focuses on the ubiquitous science fair. Main character Ima Kindanozee (say it out loud) is aptly named. She is so curious about her classmates’ science-fair projects that she checks out each one, overwhelming the creator with many questions. Unfortunately, in her enthusiastic quest for knowledge, Ima usually ends up destroying the work. Mrs. Shepherd remains relatively calm, stalling the principal’s attempts to enter the room and judge the now messy scene. She helps each student repair Ima’s damage just as Ima innocently ruins another project. Finally, principal Helm will be distracted no longer and enters the classroom. Everything has been repaired and Ima takes the Principal around, asking questions of each student that show off their knowledge. Duly impressed, Mrs. Helm leaves. Mrs. Shepherd states that Ima may not have her own science project but she certainly has “a nose for news,” with the last illustration showing the newspaper Ima has produced. Wickstrom’s cartoon-like illustrations set the tone for the silliness, and the subject of the book is sure to be a winner with teachers and children alike. (Picture book. 5-8)

Pub Date: Jan. 1, 2008

ISBN: 978-0-525-47878-2

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Dutton

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 15, 2007

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LAST DAY BLUES

From the Mrs. Hartwell's Classroom Adventures series

One more myth dispelled for all the students who believe that their teachers live in their classrooms. During the last week of school, Mrs. Hartwell and her students reflect on the things they will miss, while also looking forward to the fun that summer will bring. The kids want to cheer up their teacher, whom they imagine will be crying over lesson plans and missing them all summer long. But what gift will cheer her up? Numerous ideas are rejected, until Eddie comes up with the perfect plan. They all cooperate to create a rhyming ode to the school year and their teacher. Love’s renderings of the children are realistic, portraying the diversity of modern-day classrooms, from dress and expression to gender and skin color. She perfectly captures the emotional trauma the students imagine their teachers will go through as they leave for the summer. Her final illustration hysterically shatters that myth, and will have every teacher cheering aloud. What a perfect end to the school year. (Picture book. 5-8)

Pub Date: Feb. 1, 2006

ISBN: 1-58089-046-6

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Charlesbridge

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2006

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Informative, empowering, and fun.

ROX'S SECRET CODE

Girl power abounds in this book about coding that introduces young readers to the world of programming while offering them hands-on activities via a companion app.

In this title that was first introduced as a customizable, personalized print-on-demand product, Rox has a superpower. Using code, she programs toy robots that can do things like make broccoli disappear—or mischief. When Dad tells Rox to clean her room, she quickly thinks up a bot that will do it for her, writing code that instructs her bot to use artificial intelligence to sort objects by color and type. Though Rox knows that there’s a high potential for her creation to rebel, the perks outweigh any potential adverse effects. Rox’s robot has her room neat and tidy in no time—and then the entire home. Chorebot’s AI allows it to keep learning, and it seems Chorebot can do no wrong until the robot decides to rearrange the entire city (both buildings and people) by type, style, and gender. Chorebot goes “out of his artificial mind!” Rox must now stop her creation…without the assistance of the internet. The artwork, styled in the tradition of popular superhero series, is peppy and colorful, and it depicts Rox as an adorable black girl donning a black bomber jacket and a pink tutu. A companion app (not available for review) allows readers to create a bot of their own.

Informative, empowering, and fun. (Picture book. 5-8)

Pub Date: Nov. 6, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-57687-899-6

Page Count: 40

Publisher: POW!

Review Posted Online: Sept. 2, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15, 2018

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