Pa Lia's First Day: A Jackson Friends Book by Michelle Edwards, Paperback | Barnes & Noble
Pa Lia's First Day: A Jackson Friends Book

Pa Lia's First Day: A Jackson Friends Book

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by Michelle Edwards
     
 

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Pa Lia Vang's first day at Jackson Magnet, her new school, isn't going so well. She doesn't know anyone. She can't find her second-grade classroom. And then she gets the only person who's been nice to her into trouble. Will Pa Lia ever fit in? In this first chapter book of the Jackson Friends series, Michelle Edwards explores with humor and sensitivity the

Overview

Pa Lia Vang's first day at Jackson Magnet, her new school, isn't going so well. She doesn't know anyone. She can't find her second-grade classroom. And then she gets the only person who's been nice to her into trouble. Will Pa Lia ever fit in? In this first chapter book of the Jackson Friends series, Michelle Edwards explores with humor and sensitivity the anxieties children often face in a new situation.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
This first book in the Jackson Friends chapter book series introduces Pa Lia Vang on her first day of second grade as a new girl at Jackson Magnet School. In plain language, Edwards (Chicken Man) describes the universal experience of the start of classes: "Jackson Magnet smelled just like the first day of school. Pa Lia could smell new shoes, new pencils, and clean floors." Any student who has suffered from school jitters will identify with Pa Lia's nervous dawdling while her brother walks her to school and recognize the feeling of a mouth "stuffed with cotton" and a stomach "filled with a thousand fluttering butterflies." She soon meets an amiable classmate, Calliope, who guides her to their room, and Calliope's jealous best friend, Howie ("Howardina Geraldina Paulina Maxina Gardenia Smith"), who initially refuses to speak to her but whom Pa Lia wins over by day's end. The requisite standbys are all here (Matthew "Stinky" Stern farts in class and calls the bespectacled Pa Lia "four-eyes"), but black-and-white illustrations that mix reality with Pa Lia's wishful and fearful thoughts add some spunk. Ages 6-9. (Sept.) Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
Children's Literature - Susan Hepler
A promising start to the "Jackson Friends" series, this introduces Pa Lia Vang on her first day of second grade at a new school. Nervous and eager to make friends, she passes notes to Howie (a girl) and Calliope but Mrs. Fennessey sees the notes. When Pa Lia courageously owns up, she makes two strong friends, perhaps for the life of this series. The illustrations, two to four per double page spread, feature a multicultural cast of characters, the class has a wild guy who farts which is sure to draw laughs from knowing second graders, and the teacher is not (yet) "mean", all plusses for this age group. A Junior Library Guild selection.
Library Journal
Gr 1-3-Pa Lia Vang's first day of second grade starts out a little rough. Her new school, Jackson Magnet, is huge and intimidating and her brother leaves her to find her classroom on her own. When she's rescued by a classmate, Calliope, the day starts to improve, but Howie (short for Howardina), Calliope's best friend, wants nothing to do with the new girl. And then Pa Lia gets all three of them in trouble by passing notes in class. Though she tells their teacher that the incident was her fault, she is convinced that Howie and Calliope will never like her now. But they think that the new girl was brave to tell the truth, and she has two friends before she knows it. Pa Lia is believably insecure and frightened, and Howie is wonderfully skeptical of inviting the unknown newcomer into her safely established friendship with Calliope. The seesaw of events, going from good to bad to good again, is realistic of any first-day experience. The simple text, large print, short chapters, and illustrations will appeal to beginning chapter-book readers. Both small and full-page illustrations show the multicultural diversity of Jackson Magnet; the three girls are definite individuals, each very different, yet equally appealing. A good start to a new series.-Linda Bindner, formerly at Athens Clarke County Library, GA Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
A simple story about starting school and making friends. Pa Lia Vang's treacherous first day at Jackson Magnet School begins badly; she not only has difficulty finding her classroom, but Matthew "Stinky" Stern, the "enemy of the second grade," happens to be in her class. The teacher, Mrs. Fennessey, doesn't appreciate Pa Lia's giggling in class, while the humorous notes Pa Lia passes to Howardina and Calliope serve to get all three of them in trouble. In the end, it's Pa Lia's act of publicly owning up to her mistake and getting the others off the hook that secures new friendships and acceptance among her peers. Edwards's winning black-and-white illustrations capture the feelings of desolation, fear, embarrassment, and joy associated with first days, while the prose, composed with emerging readers in mind, yields up events briskly and concisely. (Fiction. 6-9)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780152057480
Publisher:
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date:
08/01/2005
Series:
Jackson Friends Series, #1
Edition description:
First Edition
Pages:
64
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.25(h) x 0.21(d)
Lexile:
390L (what's this?)
Age Range:
4 - 7 Years

Meet the Author

MICHELLE EDWARDS has written and illustrated many books for young readers, including Chicken Man, winner of the National Jewish Book Award, and the Jackson Friends series. She lives in Iowa City, Iowa.

Visit Michelle Edward's Web site for reader's and teacher's guides for all of the Jackson Friends books.

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