It's the First Day of School...Forever!

It's the First Day of School...Forever!

by R. L. Stine


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781250004765
Publisher: Square Fish
Publication date: 05/22/2012
Pages: 192
Sales rank: 541,286
Product dimensions: 5.28(w) x 7.46(h) x 0.53(d)
Age Range: 9 - 12 Years

About the Author

Before R. L. Stine made his name as the Stephen King of children's literature, he was the author of humorous fiction and an editor of Bananas magazine. He is the bestselling author of more than three hundred books, including the phenomenally bestselling Goosebumps series. It's the First Day of School . . . Forever! is Stine's first book with Feiwel and Friends.


New York, New York

Date of Birth:

October 8, 1943

Place of Birth:

Columbus, Ohio


B.A., Ohio State University, 1965

Read an Excerpt


My name is Artie Howard, and here goes. Here is the worst day of my life.

What could be worse than today?

Well, imagine that you have a dentist appointment. The dentist has to drill a big hole in your tooth. And he keeps drilling and drilling and drilling. For hours.

Imagine what that feels like. The dentist never takes a break. He just keeps grinding and drilling, grinding and drilling, deeper and deeper, until he drills right into your brain.

Are you feeling it? Are you imagining that?

Well ... my day was worse than that. Much worse.

Forget about the dentist. That's small-time trouble. Don't even think about the dentist. I've got a much more painful story to tell.

The morning started with a lot of pain. The alarm went off, and I fell out of bed.

My head hit the wood floor and bounced once or twice. I actually saw stars, just like in the cartoons.

I'd been sound asleep. But I was wide awake now, trying to blink away the pain that throbbed through my head. And trying to make the room stop spinning.

Before I could pull myself up, Mom walked into my room.

"Artie, what are you doing down on the floor?"

"Just my morning exercises," I said.

Okay, okay. I'm a bit of a wise guy. A good sense of humor never hurt anyone, right?

Dad says I have a "smart mouth." He doesn't mean it to be nice. But I'd rather have a smart mouth than a dumb mouth — wouldn't you?

"You don't have time for exercises," Mom said. "It's the first day of school, remember?" I groaned. "I think you reminded me of that a few hundred times."

Mom helped pull me to my feet. She squinted at me. "How did you get that bump on your head?"

"Just lucky," I said. I rubbed it. It hurt. So I stopped rubbing it.

Mom started picking up the clothes I'd tossed on the floor the night before. She can be very helpful that way.

She smiled at me. "I hope you like your new school."

Mom has a great smile. Actually, she may be the best-looking mom ever. She has white-blonde hair and bright blue eyes and dimples in her cheeks when she smiles.

She says she was a fashion model after college. But she likes to eat, so she had to give it up.

My whole family likes to eat. A lot. Which may explain why all four of us are not tiny people.

You might say we're kind of chubby. But that would be rude.

I blinked a few more times. I was still a little dizzy from hitting my head on the floor.

"My new school?" I said. "Aardvark Middle School?"

"It's not Aardvark. It's Ardmore," Mom said. "Why do you keep calling it that?"

"Because it's funny?" I said.

"Funny won't get you a loaf of bread," Mom said. It's one of her expressions. Don't ask me what it means.

I just know Mom doesn't like funny. She and Dad are both pretty serious. They're both economics professors at the community college. That's kind of serious.

She left carrying an armload of dirty clothes.

"Don't forget you have a dentist appointment after school," she called from the hallway.

"I already forgot!" I shouted back.

She thinks eleven-year-olds don't have a memory. That has to be why she reminds me of everything a dozen times.

"Bring your cell phone," Mom said. "Take the bus to the dentist and call me when you get there."

"Aye, aye," I said.

Okay. Time to get dressed. What should I wear to impress my new friends at Aardvark?

I'm not going to pretend that I haven't been thinking about it nonstop.

In fact, two night ago, I pulled out all my T-shirts and spread them across my bed. Which one should I wear? Which one?

I decided the shirt had to be black. Black is the only cool color. My eyes wandered over the black T-shirts, reading the words on the fronts:

Thanks For Sharing LOL I Rock Your Favorite Band Sucks Stand back. Wide load

Definitely not the last one. Who gave me that shirt?

I settled on a black shirt with red letters that simply said: T-SHIRT. It wasn't that funny. But at least it wasn't embarrassing.

I pulled the T-shirt down over my raggediest stonewashed faded straight-legged jeans with rips in both knees. Then I fought down my insanely curly springy black hair.

Every time I brush it down, it pops right back up. Like boinnnng. I battle my hair every morning, and I always lose.

Oh, well. Ready to rock and roll.

I picked up my phone and glanced at the screen. No text messages or missed calls. Could that be because I don't know anybody here?

The little battery in the corner of the screen was blinking. I'd forgotten to power up the thing.

Oh, well. Plenty of time while I was having breakfast.

I found the charger. Stuck it into the phone. Then I jammed the plug into the outlet near my floor. And ...



Guess who got the blast of roaring electricity jolting through his body?

Did you guess Artie Howard?

I did a crazy dance around my room. My sneakers drummed the floor like a tap dancer in fast-forward. I couldn't control my arms or legs.

When the pain finally stopped, it left me with a loud buzz in my ears. And was I dizzy? In a word, uh-huh.

I had to brush down my hair again. It was standing straight up on end.

Then I stumbled down the stairs to the kitchen for breakfast.

I saw a dirty plate at Dad's place, so I knew he had already left for work. Mom was at the coffeemaker near the sink. Wowser was under the table, hoping for some food to drop on the floor.

We call Wowser our Everything Dog. He's mostly yellow Lab and shepherd with Everything Else thrown in. One day, an entire lamb chop fell off the table right in front of Wowser. He's been waiting under the table ever since.

My little brother Eddy sat at the table, a tall stack of toaster waffles in front of him.

I say that Eddy is my little brother, but he isn't exactly little. Everything about him is round, mainly his face and his body. He has springy black hair just like me and Dad. But he has Mom's round blue eyes, which give him a real baby face.

Don't be fooled. Eddy is not a sweet little baby. He's okay, but you don't really want to get too close to him. For one thing, he bites.

Yes, he's five. But he still likes to bite.

Mom thinks it's cute. But I'm really afraid he's going to give me rabies.

You also want to watch out for Eddy because he's a total klutz. He swings his round body and waves and gestures with his hands when he talks.

He's always bumping into things and knocking everything over and spilling anything within ten feet of him. For a lumpy little guy, he has amazing reach! It's like he has rubber arms! He can reach all the way across the table and grab food off my plate.

Anyway, I sat down across from him at the kitchen table. He swung his hand and spilled his orange-juice glass. The juice trickled onto my side of the table and started to drip over the side.

"Hey —" I jumped to my feet. No way I wanted orange-juice stains on my worst pair of jeans. It had taken a long time to make my worst pair of jeans perfect, and I didn't want them messed up.

Eddy laughed. Actually, he giggled. Like a mad scientist in the cartoons.

Mom came running over with a dish towel to mop up the juice. "Eddy, don't laugh. It isn't funny," she said.

That made him giggle some more.

"You spill more juice than you drink," Mom said.

"Maybe I don't like juice," he said in his whiny little baby voice. He has a smart mouth, too.

When the table was dry, I sat back down. "Eddy, you know you weren't born," I said. "You were picked out of somebody's nose."

"Artie, don't be gross," Mom said.

"Just telling the truth," I said.

"Is that how babies are born?" Eddy said. He was just being stupid.

The toaster at the end of the table popped. Boinnnnng. The waffles shot up into the air. I swiped them and dropped them onto my plate.

I reached for the syrup bottle. Eddy reached for it, too. "More syrup," he said.

He squeezed the bottle. Thick brown syrup made a thwuppp sound as it sprayed from the plastic bottle — shot across the table — and splashed into my hair.

At first, I didn't believe it. But then I felt the sticky goo sliding down the side of my head.

"Mom!" I screamed. I reached my hand up and brushed it along my hair. Now my hand was sticky and wet.

Eddy giggled. "Oops," he said. He never says he is sorry about anything. All he ever says is "Oops."

The whole left side of my hair was glued together. "Mom — look what he did!" I cried.

"I see," Mom said. "That's a sticky mess." She frowned at Eddy.

"Why did you do that to your brother?"

"Oops." Eddy said it again.

Mom thinks he's so adorable. He always gets away by saying Oops.

I jumped to my feet. "I ... I have to go wash the syrup out of my hair," I said.

Mom glanced at the brass clock shaped like a frying pan above the sink. "No time," she said. "You don't want to be late for your first day in a new school."

"I don't want to be a glue-haired geek my first day in a new school!" I cried.

"It's on your shirt, too," Eddy said, pointing.

Yes. Nice one, Eddy. Gooey syrup down one sleeve.

"I'm sorry," Mom said. "Go take a towel and try to rub it out as best you can."

Before I could move, Wowser jumped up, plopped his big paws on my shoulders — and began to lick the syrup off my shirt sleeve.

"Let go! Let go of me, Wowser!" The dog's tongue was as big as my hand.


His nails shredded the sleeve of my T-shirt. I finally pushed him away and started to my room. "Breakfast went well," I told myself. "Good start to the day."

I ran upstairs. I pulled off the T-SHIRT T-shirt. I put on my black T-shirt with the yellow-chalk outline of a body. It looks just like the crime-scene drawings on TV.

Maybe it was a little bold for the first day of school. But what choice did I have? I couldn't wear a T-shirt with LOL on the front. Everyone would laugh at me.

In the bathroom, I tried to brush the syrup from my hair. But the hairbrush stuck to my head.

Think fast, Artie. I had to do something. I grabbed a blue-and-red Cubs cap from my closet and pulled it down over my hair.

That looked a lot better. My first day in a new school. Of course, I wanted to make a good impression. All I cared about was looking cool.

"Hurry, Artie," Mom shouted from downstairs. "You're going to be late."

"Coming," I shouted back. I checked myself out in the mirror one more time. Then I started down the stairs.

Mom was waiting at the bottom of the stairs. "Oh. By the way," she said. "You have to walk Eddy to his kindergarten."

"Yaaaaay," Eddy cheered and stomped as hard as he could on my foot.

Pain shot up my leg. I slung my backpack over my shoulder and limped out of the house, dragging my aching foot.

"And hold Eddy's hand when crossing the street," Mom called.

Oh, yeah. I was definitely going to look cool.


It had rained hard the night before. The sky was still gray with streaks of morning yellow breaking through. The street and sidewalk were filled with big puddles of rainwater.

Eddy insisted on jumping into all of them.

"Stop it! You're splashing me!" I shouted.

That made him giggle. He leaped into a wide puddle with both feet. His sneakers were soaked, but he didn't seem to care. He only cared about making big splashes.

"Ba-boom! Ba-boom! Ba-boom!" he cried out with each splash.

I tried to stay as far away from him as I could.

I saw several other kids walking to school. I didn't want them to know that this jumping chimpanzee was part of my family.

But I had to hold his hand when we crossed streets. If I didn't, he'd tell Mom.

Eddy got such a thrill from snitching on me.

His school was only three blocks from our house. But with him dancing and jumping and splashing, it seemed like three miles.

"Ba-boom! Ba-boom! Ba-boom!"

"Stop splashing. Can't you walk?" I demanded.

"No," he replied. "I can only jump." He leaped into a muddy puddle and sent water flying around him.

Aardvark Middle School was two more blocks down the street. Could I drop Eddy off at the door and make it to my new school safely?


We stepped up to the corner across from his school. It was a long, one-story brick building with a grassy playground at the side. On a tall pole near the entrance, an American flag flapped against the gray sky.

A big black-and-yellow sign near the front walk read: Cyrus Elementary, Home of the Fighting Bumblebees.

Eddy grabbed my T-shirt sleeve. "What does that sign say?" he asked.

"It says Big Baby School," I told him. "That's the name of your school. Big Baby School."

"It does not!" he cried.

I was about to reply when the truck came roaring by.

It was one of those long silver-tank trucks with the word GASOLINE on the side. It thundered past us. Its engine roared like a wild animal.

The big tires shot through a wide puddle — sending a huge tidal wave of water over the sidewalk.

I felt a splash of cold on the front of my jeans.

With a gasp, I glanced down.

The front of my jeans was soaked through.

My mouth dropped open. It happened so quickly. I just stared at the big, dark stain on the front of my jeans.

Then I heard Eddy start to laugh like a maniac.

"It looks like you peed!" he cried.


I took Eddy into his school and dropped him off in his classroom. His teacher had bright red hair and a lot of freckles.

She said, "Hi and welcome" to my brother. But she was staring at the front of my jeans the whole time.

At least, I thought she was.

I tried to tug the bottom of my T-shirt down over the wet stain. But the T-shirt was too short.

Why were my jeans taking so long to dry?

I tried to walk slowly to my school to give them time to dry. But I didn't want to be late. Other kids were hurrying past me. I could swear each one stopped to stare at the wet spot on my jeans.

But maybe it was my imagination.

Ardmore Middle School looks more old-fashioned than my brother's Big Baby School. His school looks like a long ranch house. My school looked like a school you see in old movies on TV.

It was a tall, gray stone building with lots of windows up the front of its four floors. Ivy creeps down from the roof and dangles over nearly half the front wall.

I saw a teachers' parking lot filled with cars. Behind it — a small football stadium with bleacher seats on both sides. Some kids were tossing a baseball back and forth on the sidewalk at the bottom of the front steps.

I glanced down at my jeans. Still wet.

With a sigh, I started to climb the stone steps that led to the white double doors at the entrance. I was halfway up when I recognized the man in the brown suit at the top.

He was Mr. Jenks, the principal. I'd met him when Mom and Dad brought me to see my new school for the first time. He was shaking hands and greeting every student.

Mr. Jenks was a smiley kind of guy. He had a round, bald head and tiny blue eyes, and he always seemed to have a smile on his face. Like it was painted or glued on or something.

His eyes, nose, and mouth were jammed in the middle of his face. When I first saw him, I thought of Mr. Potato Head.

But he seemed like a nice guy. And his smile was a kind smile.

He stared right at you with those little blue eyes, like he was really interested in what you were saying. And he had a soft voice — very calm.

I only met him that one day last summer. But he seemed much nicer than my old principal, who liked to act tough and give orders.

"Artie, hello," he said. He reached out and shook my hand. I smelled peppermint on his breath. "Welcome to Ardmore."

Was he staring at the wet stain on my jeans?

Two girls passed by. They both looked at my jeans. I know they did.

Mr. Jenks adjusted the collar of the yellow turtleneck he wore under the brown suit jacket. "First, you need to find whose class you are in," he said. "The class lists are posted on the wall across from my office."

"Thank you," I said. I started to step past him, but he stopped me.

"Artie, I'm sorry. We don't wear baseball caps in this school. Could you take yours off?"

"Uh ... sure," I said.

I grabbed the bill of the cap and started to tug. I was surprised when the cap didn't slide off easily. It was stuck.

Then I remembered why I was wearing the cap. Syrup hair!

I had no choice. I gave the cap a hard tug — and let out a sharp cry. A massive chunk of my hair came off with the cap.

That syrup was worse than glue. Now I had a big bald spot on the side of my head.

I tried to straighten what was left of my hair. But it was matted in sticky, stiff clumps.

Well, okay. I was not exactly going to be the coolest looking dude in the sixth grade today.


Excerpted from "It's The First Day of School ... Forever!"
by .
Copyright © 2011 R.L. Stine.
Excerpted by permission of Feiwel and Friends.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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It's the First Day of School...Forever! 3.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 39 reviews.
Sunshine2000SD More than 1 year ago
This is a great book! It's about a kid named Artie going to a new school. And he keeps reliving his horrible first day over and over again! Plus, I never would've suspected what happened at the end. It made me want to read more! You have to read this book.
ChelseaW More than 1 year ago
Artie Howard is having some trouble on his first day of fifth grade. It starts with him falling out of bed and gets much worse after that. Everything he does at school seems to go terribly, horribly wrong. He makes enemies of the biggest and scariest boy in school, loses the class pet, and gets creepy warnings from the principal. And just when he thinks he may have made it through the worst day of his life, he starts it all over again! Ahhh.... R.L. Stine. Does middle-grade horror get any better than this? I think not. As a long time (my whole life, practically) fan of Mr. Stine, I am always stoked when he writes another book. This time, it is his first with Feiwel and Friends, and I certainly hope this is the start of a great publishing relationship! The story was pure, classic Stine. Short chapters, with cliffhangers at the end of every one of them. Spooky imagery and tense scenes. Artie was humorous and likeable, even when he got into all of those accidents. And the twist ending will make young readers gasp with surprise, before they laugh at the brilliance of it!
Barbara Para More than 1 year ago
This book is a great book!it after you read a chaptter it makes you want to read more!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Whene i read this story i could not put it down, it was scary and suspensful , but his first " day" at school just keeps getting worse and worse!!!!!!!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A little corney because of the vidio game.Other than that it was nice and scary.Thanks RL Stine
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is a great book it has all the parts that a good reader would want to have in a book its so instering that youll always want to read more!
Elizabeth Jones More than 1 year ago
This book is great
jose.jbar7644 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This book is about a kid named Artie who woke up by hitting the floor, his mom came in and ask what are you doing on the floor. Artie said doing my mornign excecises. When Artie got down he saw his little brother and his brother sprayed syrup on him. Artie got splashed by a truck when he had to walk his little brother to school and his brother said it looks like you pead yourself. When he got to school he went to the wrong class room and was emmbarresed and he accidentally got someone elses back back from someone named Brick. When Artie saw this one room he saw statues coverd with a wrapping when he unwrapped the he saw a kid say i am Artie. The second day when he got to school his dog jumped on the principle and bit his hand. the third day it was different he was having something else for breakfast and his brother sprayed ketchup all over his face adn when he walked his brother to school there was a skunk oil truck and it got all over Artie and everything was black. Artie woke up and saw he was in the dentist, after the dens=tist he went to bed and it was the first day of school again. Artie was actually in a video game
Ronrose1 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Wow, I think I must have gone to the same school. I have certainly felt many of the same fears on my first day at a new school. Leave it to R.L. Stine to take things to the extreme and make everything seem impossibly creepy. If you like Stine's books, you will certainly welcome this new addition. If you haven't tried him, this strange tale with a twist ending will be a good book to start with. This book provided for review by the well read folks at Feiwel and Friends an imprint of Macmillan.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The book is amazin. I love is.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love this book
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love horror and comedt and Mr. Stine makes the two go together like peanut butter and jelly!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It was really creepy but awesome
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Nice and good i liked it
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Kept gettting worse and worse.
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Maria Munoz More than 1 year ago
Good book for ages9-12
Ronrose More than 1 year ago
Wow, I think I must have gone to the same school. I have certainly felt many of the same fears on my first day at a new school. Leave it to R.L. Stine to take things to the extreme and make everything seem impossibly creepy. If you like Stine's books, you will certainly welcome this new addition. If you haven't tried him, this strange tale with a twist ending will be a good book to start with. This book provided for review by the well read folks at Feiwel and Friends an imprint of Macmillan.