A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this book.
Shows kids ways to face their fear and uncertainty, and how to help others who are.
Be proud of who you are, and don't give up on your dreams because you're scared to take the next step.
Positive Role Models
Penelope's parents are loving in the ways they help her embrace who she is. Her friends are kind and supportive.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that We Will Rock Our Classmates, the second book in the Penelope series by author-illustrator Ryan T. Higgins, is the funny, touching story of a young T. rex whose nervousness gets in the way of showing off her rock 'n' roll skills to her human classmates. The word choice and images are a lot of fun, like the page with the description of "Walter the ferocious goldfish" above a colorful drawing of a comically non-fierce fish in a bowl. The vocabulary is advanced for early readers (guitar, hopscotch) but is great for adults reading aloud. And the story is long enough to include plenty of detail.
Is It Any Good?
The combination of witty text and vibrant illustrations showcases the importance of individuality and the power of friendship. In We Will Rock Our Classmates, Penelope's dad saying that being a T. rex is only part of who she is reminds readers that we are all complex people, each of us with a variety of hobbies, talents, and interests that sometimes defy expectations. This book nicely emphasizes the role friends can play in boosting confidence. Readers see that when someone feels down like Penelope, our outreach can make a huge difference.
The lessons are age appropriate and the illustrations are delightful. It's no easy feat when drawing a cartoon dinosaur to create nuanced facial expressions, yet that's what author-illustrator Ryan T. Higgins gives Penelope's parents.
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.