Emily Smith's Reviews > First Grade Stinks!

First Grade Stinks! by Mary Ann Rodman
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's review
Apr 05, 2012

really liked it

First Grade Stinks is about a little girl, Haley, who is very excited to start the first grade. She realizes that she is more mature than the kindergartners now because she enters school all by herself without the holding her mother's hand. While passing her old classroom, she sees all of the colorful pictures on the wall and her old teacher, Ms. Lacy wearing a yellow shirt and yellow shoes. When she finds her new room, she is surprised to see that her teacher is wearing an ugly brown shirt and ugly brown shoes. She says that her name is Ms. Gray and smiles but it is not as big as Ms. Lacy's smile. When she enters the classroom, there is nothing colorful or pretty hanging from the ceiling and the walls are bare. Her new room is no fun. After Ms. Gray takes attendance, she says that it is writing time. One of Haley's friends, Sasha, tells Ms. Gray that in kindergarten they had share time first. Ms. Gray shakes her head though and tells the class that they are too busy for share time and she asks Ryan to hand out the writing paper. Haley is upset because Ms. Lacy always let her hand out the writing paper. She comes to the conclusion that firs grade stinks because there is no share time and no smiley teacher. During the writing lesson, Haley is ready for recess. She sees the kindergartners walk pass her door to recess but that is when Ms. Gray says that it is time for the art lesson. She tells Ms. Gray that it is time for recess but Ms. Gray says that first graders only have one recess. For her picture, Haley draws an orange sky but Ms. Gray does not really like it even though Ms. Lacy did like her orange skies. At recess, she tells Ryan that first grade stinks but he likes it. At lunch, there is only vanilla ice cream left because the kindergartners ate all of the chocolate so even lunch stinks. After lunch, it is story time but Erika raises her hand and asks about naptime. In kindergarten, after lunch they always took a nap. Luckily, Ms. Gray said that there is no naptime in the first grade which is great because Haley does not like naptime anyway so first grade is not that bad. While reading the story, Ms. Gray stops reading at the best part and Haley is confused. She says that it is time for math. In kindergarten, Ms. Lacy would read the class many picture books in one day. Haley whispers to Ryan that she wants to go back to kindergarten but Ms. Gray tells her to stop whispering. Haley is so mad that she screams "FIRST GRADE STINKS!" Ms. Gray asks Haley what is wrong and Haley tells her that she does not like the first grade because Ms. Gray did not finish the book. Ms. Gray explains to her that every day she will read one chapter of the book everyday. In first grade, the students read chapter books and will learn how to read the books by themselves. Haley is very happy about that and she thinks that the first grade will be wonderful. This book is for children who are in the primary level because it is all about why some kids do not like first grade and that tough transition from kindergarten to first grade. This book looks like the illustrator, Beth Spiegel, used water color for the pages. There is no definite line to the pictures so the colors all blend in together. This is a great technique because it looks as if a first grader illustrated the book. There is also a lot of different colors on each page. I would recommend this book for parents who have a child about to enter first grade. In the beginning of the book, the author, Mary Ann Rodman, talks about the differences between kindergarten and first grade. Throughout the book though, she writes about the perks of being a first grader and all the fun things that first graders get to do. It is a great transition book between the two grades.

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