A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this book.
Shows school setting wth details like taking a backpack to hold your books, bringing your lunch, riding the school bus, etc.
Being nervous about the first day of school is completely normal! Be kind to others and yourself. Include others, even when they are different from you. Do your best to help people succeed.
Positive Role Models
A variety of animals -- some small, some large, some predators, some prey, some slow, some fast, some tired, some super energetic -- each with their own challenges and unique strengths, face the first day of school together. They model collaboration and support as they make new friends and help one another have a successful first day.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that bestselling author Jory John has turned his witty eye to the first day of school in First Day Critter Jitters, with pictures by acclaimed illustrator Liz Climo. Sloth, Snake, Mouse, Bunny, and other critter friends are all nervous about the first day of school: Sloth worries about being slow, mouse frets about being the smallest, Bear would rather just hibernate through it all. Young readers will see that kindness, working together, and including others help the animals have a successful day. A variety of critters stand in for human differences (prey/predator, fast/slow, shy/social, etc.), and they model using unique skills and abilities to support one another. This is a perfect pick for young kids as they head back to school.
Is It Any Good?
This funny, charming picture book capitalizes on each animal's hallmark attribute to reveal worries most young kids share about the first day of school. Kids will giggle and see themselves in the story as Sloth worries about being late to school ("I probably should have left yesterday"), Kangaroo longs for another year in mama's pouch, and Bunny fears that the need to hop, hop, hop will get them in trouble. The twist of the nervous teacher is a reassuring bonus, and the ending is as rewarding as it gets. With John's typical lively dialogue and Climo's expressive yet uncluttered illustrations, this book is especially great as a read-aloud. Perfect for families and classrooms, this is a standout in the back-to-school genre.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.