Children's Literature - Marilyn CourtotLuke finally has a loose tooth, but it just doesn't want to come out. His friend Max has a suggestion, but Luke isn't so sure he wants to try the Tooth-Pulling Machine. Luke tries a variety of techniques including the string and slamming a door, brushing his teeth real hard, and eating crunch foods. They don't work, and as his friend Lisa advises, the tooth just isn't going to budge until it's ready. Happily, it finally does come out. This is an offering in the new "Real Kids Reader" series, which are phonics-based stories that include instructions for adults to enable them to help kids learn to read.
School Library JournalK-Gr 3--These books will add a breath of fresh air to beginning-reader collections. The stories center on a group of friends who live near a small park in an urban neighborhood. The events and dialogue reinforce the "Real Kids" in the series title and will strike a chord with children who are experiencing the same dilemmas and delights as the characters. Being the last one to lose a tooth, running a lemonade stand, and looking for a lost hat are not plots that cover new ground but in these titles they are made interesting and appealing by fresh voices and crisp, full-color photographs. The print stands out clearly when boxed on top of the photographs and against the white background of the page. A strong selling point of this phonics-based series is the vocabulary that can be mastered by many first graders but will interest older children as well. A section for parents at the back of each book includes tips on encouraging beginning readers and phonetic guidelines. Solid alternatives to the usual fare.--Maura Bresnahan, Topsfield Town Library, MA
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