Sunday, September 20, 2020

Review - One Golden Rule at School

One Golden Rule at School: A Counting Book

by Selina Alko
Date: 2020
Publisher: Henry Holt & Company
Reading level: C
Book type: picture book
Pages: 40
Format: e-book
Source: library

Award-winning creator Selina Alko's One Golden Rule at School is a charming story that's two books in one--a counting book and a school primer for little ones.

Young children experience a day of preschool, beginning with morning meeting, story time, and art projects, then on to outside play, puzzles, and snack and nap time, ending with a heartwarming golden rule.

Set against the familiar and dynamic backdrop of a daily school adventure, this vibrant counting book showcases a diverse and inclusive classroom of learners. The text counters from one to ten and back again while the back matter counts higher to twenty.

(synopsis from Goodreads)

This is a rhyming counting book that focusses on a day at school. The text counts upward from one to ten, with most pages reinforcing the number more than once, before counting back down again to one. The illustrations are collages and feature a diverse class of students.

I was a bit taken aback by the first page for "6". Parents who are sensitive about 9/11 might want to be aware that the page features a little girl in a hijab with a sign about a skyscraper... which another child is throwing paper airplanes at. This might be viewed as tone-deaf and distasteful by some.

Other than that, the meter is good and I don't have any complaints with the illustrations; they're fun to look at. The overall premise is fine and the text and pictures work well together as they show young children what a typical day at school might be like. I'm not sure that the "golden rule" part of it really works; it seems tacked on more than anything and doesn't really integrate with the text. But it's always a nice message to see in picture books, even if it isn't the focus like it should be.

Premise: 3/5
Meter: 3/5
Writing: 3/5
Illustrations: 3/5
Originality: 3/5

Enjoyment: 2/5

Overall: 3 out of 5

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