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Last Day Blues (Mrs. Hartwell's Class Adventures) Hardcover – February 1, 2006
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From School Library Journal
Kindergarten-Grade 3–Mrs. Hartwells students are worried about how sad shell be and how much shell miss them when school lets out for the summer. They look for the perfect gift to help her remember them and decide to make a poster with a poem and drawings featuring all of the things that theyll miss about school, especially their teacher. Bursting with color, the cartoon illustrations look at the experience from both sides with hilarious results. The characters faces are highly expressive and run the gamut of emotions throughout the book. As the children wrack their brains for the perfect present, a group of teachers can be seen in the distance planning their vacations with great excitement. A story with both child and teacher appeal.–Genevieve Gallagher, Murray Elementary School, Charlottesville, VA
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
K-Gr. 2. For all the fuss about the beginning of school, only a handful of picture books take place at the end. Here, Mrs. Hartwell's class, a tight-knit group, sympathetically imagines how much their teacher will miss them over the summer: "While we're swimming, she'll be reading her old lesson plans." They decide to do what they can to cheer Mrs. Hartwell, soon to be devastated by their absence. There's an undertone of irony here, which adults may pick up sooner than children. Despite the mournful, last-day-of-school scene the children imagine (when the final school bus pulls away, a crew of bereft and bawling teachers remains on the steps), the book's last in-school scene shows a conga line of happy teachers bouncing down the hallway. The comic exaggeration in the vivid, colorful illustration makes this a lively choice for sharing with school groups, and the wordless illustrations on the last page show what Mrs. Hartwell really does over the summer. Carolyn Phelan
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved