Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Mentor Text...What I learned from SCHOOL'S FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL by Adam Rex

Mentor text demonstrating...POINT OF VIEW

Adam Rex takes a ho-hum subject, one that has been done and re-done, and done AGAIN, flips it on its head with a new point of view to create something wonderfully fantastic and VERY entertaining.

In this picture book, the "character" experiencing the first day of school is a newly built Frederick Douglass Elementary.  The school himself.  The school has interesting conversations with the janitor about what he is experiencing.  The fear of what it is going to be like, the insecurity...etc.

It also shows situations such as kids saying they "hate school"...which "makes the school sag a little."  A little girl with freckles doesn't want to come inside, so the school says to himself, "I must be awful."

What I noticed about this is that Rex is actually touching on our human emotions and experiences.  Every reader can relate to how it feels to be hated or not included, but by having the school feel that way, it's a fresh and unique way to explore that topic.  It gets us to think about filtering our are we making others feel (in this case the school building which is whimsical and serious all at the same time) with our words.  And not once did Adam Rex say "we should be careful what we say to others, "or any preachy thing like that.  A very masterful way to get a message across to the reader.

Way to go, Adam Rex!  I loved your story of SCHOOL'S FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL.  And thank you, PBSummit, for your wonderful suggestion of a mentor text.


  1. Sounds like such a great book Mindy! Have you seen Dandi Daley McCall's 'Flip-Sides'? So clever, and a similar stategy.

  2. I will have to look for that title, sounds great!