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Back to School Tortoise
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Back to School Tortoise

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3.89 of 5 stars 3.89  ·  rating details  ·  105 ratings  ·  36 reviews
It's time to go back to school. But Tortoise is worried. What if he falls down? What if he doesn't like lunch? What if the kids are mean to him? What if he falls down, doesn't like lunch, and the kids are mean to him? The perfect back-to-school book about being brave, with a surprise at the end!
Hardcover, 24 pages
Published 2011 by Albert Whitman (first published February 28th 2009)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 149)
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Krista Lineweaver
This book, Back to School Tortoise by Lucy M. George, is a nursery aged picturebook. It is about a tortoise that is nervous to go back to school. He is worried that he won't make any friends, but in the end he walks into the classroom and all is well. This book can be read in a group furing circle time or individually with a teacher or adult. The children will love the illustrations that are very bright and colorful. The children could point to the animals and name different ones, or the childre ...more
Stef Rozitis
(spoiler alerts) I dunno, I am all about eroding the dichotomy between teachers and students, but the twist at the end of my book left me and the children going wtf? It didn't fit a child's world view it was an adult joke essentially but neither written in an adult nor an accessible to the child sort of a way. The protagonist is referred to as "he" and doesn't have a name (not even Tortoise) which makes the books seem sort of rushed and half thought-out.

My little critical literacy experts were
...more
Jennifer Kaap
Sweet Back-to-School Book... with a heartwarming twist!
Kristel
Picture books with messages of getting ready to go back to school, an event dreaded by most children, abound. Yet, this story has a unique twist. Tortoise is not your average animal getting ready to go back to school. The reader follows along as he says walks along to school, imagining all the ways his first day can go awry. But, “as bravely as he could” Tortoise decides to open the door into the classroom. Beyond delightful, this story provides a fresh new look on an old routine. Painted in ear ...more
Caroline Downer
I thought "Back to School Tortoise" was an interesting book, and very cute. The illustrations are adorable and the twist at the end of the story completely caught me by surprise! The story is about a tortoise gearing up for his first day back at school. He is at first excited, but then gets nervous thinking about all the things that could go wrong. Then, the tortoise begins to think positively and works up the courage to enter the classroom. At the end of the story the reader realizes that the t ...more
Catherine Austen
Loved it, loved it, loved it. The illustrations are just wonderful - I love the colours (that gorgeous green) and the white spaces and big lettering and the way we're led through the story. Tortoise's mug is just adorable. And the story of his fears is relevant to kids of all ages. There are many picture books about being scared to go to school - this one was especially charming for me.

And the ending, well, I was loving this book before the awesome ending but after that final page I was truly s
...more
Alexandra
Charming. Will definitely recommend this one to kiddos and parents looking for a good "first day of school" book. The twist is a nice touch.

I've never tried a book about school in story time but I think this one could work; the illustrations are sweet and the text is mostly expressive thoughts. It's a good size for storytime, too.
Renee
Sep 21, 2014 Renee rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: PreK-K
3.75 A cute back to school story with a twist at the end. The pictures are cute - I only wish the tortoise's dream lunch wasn't a bunch of sweets (that's the daughter of a dietitian in me). For PreK/K
Jill
When summer ends, Tortoise is nervous about going back to school. He hesitates, and runs through all the "what-ifs" in his mind. Finally gaining his courage, he steps into the classroom and heads to the front-he is the teacher! PreK-Grade 2.

Curriculum Connection: This would be a great book for those first days back to school with little ones, to discuss that everyone has anxiety and fears about new situations,not just children. It offers reassurance that even their teacher is nervous on the firs
...more
Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance
A little story taken from a joke that’s been widely circulated among teachers. Tortoise gets up. It’s the first day of school. But on the way to school, Tortoise begins to worry that he won’t be liked and he won’t have fun. He decides to sit outside the classroom, too scared to go in. Then he starts to imagine all the fun he might be missing and goes in. The class greets him, saying, “Good morning, Mr. Tortoise.”

“Tortoise got up,
got dressed,
and had breakfast.
Then he left for school.
But he starte
...more
Susan
It's about worrying that things might go wrong with a twist at the end (I never saw it coming) and charming pictures.
Karen Burt
"Back to School Tortoise" is a back to school book that emphasizes the bravery involved in meeting and making new friends. This book says what many kids feel at the beginning of school. The illustrations show the different emotions that go into the first day of school. This story would also be a good "quick check" book to see which students pick up on the twist at the end.
Krista
Just as it says in the title, I think this book would be great to read when the children come back to school. Some of the characters in the book are not excited to go back to school, but int he end they all are happy to be back and excited to learn which I think is a great way to start the year off. The illustrations are also fun for the kids and have fun animal characters.
Kris
The cute ending on this pushed it up to a four for me. On his first day back at school, Tortoise worries. What if he trips? What if he doesn't like lunch? But then he also "what ifs" good things, too, like his favorite lunch and making new friends. He decides he can go through with the first day despite his fears, and the cute twist at the end will charm little ones.
Tricia
Tortoise gets up and prepares for school with "what if's" in this head...both positive and negative. As he enters the classroom, children will giggle with surprise and delight to find what role he plays in the group.
Bethe
love the illustrations and the surprise ending! I know a bunch of teachers who will want this book next August. Too short however, it needs to be longer to get 5 stars.
Nicole
Not bad. My favorite part was the illustrations (so cute). The story is pretty simple and not very substantial, though it does deal with some common back-to-school worries...
Susan Reed
Thank you to Olivia for bringing in this book to share - it was a wonderful connection to another story we read last week. Can you remember which one?
Alicia
Perfect for a child nervous about starting preschool or kindergarten. I love the adorable animal characters. This is a sweet story with a funny little twist.
Ana
An endearing "twist" on the back-to-school theme. As a former teacher, something I could definitely relate to!
Rebecca
Aww, this one does a nice job of addressing back-to-school fears in a simple, heartwarming way.
Kelly
A very cute story about going back to school. This will work for children and adults.
Stefani
Cute and simple. Very basic, but not bad for tackling the beginning school jitters.
Kristina
Beautiful illustrations and simple text; however, the ending is just ho hum.
The Reading Countess
Cute story about the first day of school jitters perfect for the younger set.
Robin
This is a beautifully illustrated back to school story has an unexpected twist!
Peacegal
Get ready to "Squee!" This book is absolutely adorable.
Shazzer
Wonderfully unexpected ending.
Lindsay
school, teachers, friends, feelings
Rowlak5
Fun surprise at the end.
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