Rufus Goes to School

Rufus Goes to School

4.3 4
by Kim Griswell, Gorbachev Valeri
     
 
All Rufus Leroy Williams III wants is to go to school so he can learn to read his favorite book. But there's one problem: he's a pig and Principal Lipid says: “NO PIGS IN SCHOOL!” Rufus even gets a backpack, a lunchbox, and a blanket to prove he's ready. But Mr. Lipid won't budge. Is there ANYTHING Rufus can do to change his mind? Kim Griswell and

Overview

All Rufus Leroy Williams III wants is to go to school so he can learn to read his favorite book. But there's one problem: he's a pig and Principal Lipid says: “NO PIGS IN SCHOOL!” Rufus even gets a backpack, a lunchbox, and a blanket to prove he's ready. But Mr. Lipid won't budge. Is there ANYTHING Rufus can do to change his mind? Kim Griswell and illustrator Valeri Gorbachev have created a love letter to reading that's also a charming, original, and child-friendly first-day-of-school story.

Editorial Reviews

The New York Times - Sarah Harrison Smith
…so charming it could be enjoyed at any time of year. But this tale of a piglet's bid to get an education is perfect for September…Griswell's storytelling has just the right amount of repetition and predictability, like a catchy song…And Gorbachev's pen, ink and watercolor pictures are timelessly appealing: richly colored, with soft, sketchy lines and funny details.
Publishers Weekly
Griswell debuts with a sweet-natured story about a pig who wants to go to school more than anything. When Rufus Leroy Williams III shows up with a backpack, ready to learn, he’s met with resistance. “Pigs track mud in the halls,” says Principal Lipid. “They turn their drawings into airplanes. They play leapfrog in class.” In characteristically loose and expressive ink and watercolor illustrations, Gorbachev draws each of these scenarios and more; the third time is the charm for Rufus, as he earns his way into a classroom. A warm, gently humorous story for kids who are looking to school with anticipation, not trepidation. Ages 3–6. (Aug.)
From the Publisher
“. . . this is a pure porcine pleasure.” —Booklist
 
"A warm, gently humorous story for kids who are looking to school with anticipation, not trepidation." —Publishers Weekly
 
"...so charming it could be enjoyed at any time of year . . . Griswell's storytelling has just the right amount of repetition and predictability, like a catchy song . . .  And Gorbachev's pen, ink and watercolor pictures are timelessly appealing: richly colored, with soft, sketchy lines and funny details. Though this Ukrainian-born illustrator's style is his own, it brings to mind Garth Williams, David McPhail and Maurice Sendak." —New York Times

"With lively illustrations and a determined, endearing protagonist, this is a perfect pick for back-to-school programs. Children will love this intrepid pink hero.” —School Library Journal

School Library Journal
10/01/2013
K-Gr 2—Rufus Leroy Williams III longs to learn to read, and he knows just the place to go to make it happen. All he needs is a backpack and his favorite book and he is ready to hop on the bus to school. There is just one snag in his grand scheme: he is a pig. Pigs are not allowed in school, Principal Lipid informs him, because they are messy and distracting and start food fights in the cafeteria. Rufus is disheartened but not discouraged. He returns again with other items that might better prepare him for school and promises to be on his best behavior. "Makes no difference," the principal intones. Suddenly inspired, Rufus relates that his true passion is to learn to read his favorite book. Finally the principal is convinced and leads him into the classroom. Rufus is overjoyed, reveling in every aspect of the school day, most of all storytime, which allows him to dream. With lively illustrations and a determined, endearing protagonist, this is a perfect pick for back-to-school programs. Children will love this intrepid pink hero.—Jasmine L. Precopio, Fox Chapel Area School District, Pittsburgh, PA
Kirkus Reviews
Rufus Leroy Williams III is determined to learn how to read, but can he convince Principal Lipid to allow a pig in school? Rufus makes the best of his illiteracy by imagining his own stories to go with the pictures in his favorite book, but still he longs to read. The tiny pig knows just how to solve his problem, though: With a backpack, he can go to school. But Principal Lipid seems to think it takes more than a backpack to attend school--if you are a pig, that is, since pigs are sure to wreak all sorts of havoc in school: track mud, start food fights, etc. Rufus decides a lunchbox is just the ticket, but the principal feels differently. Maybe a blanket for naptime? Or promises not to engage in specific behaviors? Nope. But the real necessary items were with Rufus all along--a book and the desire to learn to read it. Gorbachev's ink-and-watercolor illustrations emphasize Rufus' small size, making both his desire and the principal's rejection seem that much larger. Parents and teachers beware: The humorous pages of imagined, naughty behavior may be more likely to catch children' eyes than Rufus' earnestly good behavior. But it is the parting sentence that will hit home with everyone: "But Rufus loved storytime most of all… / …because it gave him room to dream." (Picture book. 4-6)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781454904168
Publisher:
Sterling Children's Books
Publication date:
08/06/2013
Pages:
32
Sales rank:
203,979
Product dimensions:
10.30(w) x 10.10(h) x 0.50(d)
Age Range:
3 - 6 Years

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Meet the Author

Kim T. Griswell is a developmental editor for Uncle John's Bathroom Readers and the former coordinating editor of Highlights for Kids. She continues to help develop and teach writers' workshops with the Highlights Foundation; has taught with the Institute for Children's Literature; and has published more than 200 short stories, articles, and columns. Her children's book, Carnivorous Plants, was published by Kidhaven Press. She lives in Ashland, OR. Learn more about Kim at her website, kimgriswell.com.
 
Valeri Gorbachev emigrated from his native Ukraine to the US in 1991, and now lives in Brooklyn, NY. He has written and/or illustrated more than 50 children's books, including Turtle's Penguin Day and The Giant Hug by Sandra Horning (both Knopf).

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Rufus Goes to School 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
ChatWithVera More than 1 year ago
Delightful Rufus is back again! Rufus really wants to go to school and he finds there is a "no pigs allowed" rule. He begins to persuade the principal that he really and truly is ready for school even if he is a pig. You see, Rufus dearly loves books. Turning the pages of his favorite books is a joy to him but he needed to learn to read the words - that's what school is for. I just love the expressive, colorful drawings that capture the drool expressions and depict the scenes so aptly. The illustrations will provide ample opportunity during read-aloud sessions to engage the child in discussions that will increase his/her attention to detail. description What is "in" this book? I see a deeper, underlying theme of discrimination. "No pigs allowed" because of a variety of reasons. This isn't addressed, but can be during read-aloud sessions when ultimately the discrimination is set aside because the real reason to go to school is to learn. This is the strong ending and no one is discriminated against learning. I see the theme of "having things" as a qualifier for attending school given a backseat by the truth that school is for learning - Rufus wanted to learn to read the words in his beloved picture book. description I see the story ending on the high note of students enjoying all aspects of school. It is BACK-TO-SCHOOL time and this would be a good read at home for the kids starting school, in school libraries for read-aloud sessions, and for shelving at libraries everywhere. Another delightful "Rufus" book that Chat With Vera heartily recommends. DISCLOSURE: I received a complimentary copy to facilitate this review and the opinions expressed are solely my own. I was not compensated for this review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Purchased this book for my granddaughters first day of preschool. The artwork is adorable! The message it sends is do not give up, pursue your dream.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago