Kay Winters lives in Bucks County, Pennsylvania. Denise Brunkus lives in New Jersey.
K-Gr 3-Oliver's class has been learning about elections and presidential responsibilities. He writes a letter to Channel 39, putting forth a plethora of reasons why his teacher would be perfect presidential material. The story proceeds with a single sentence and appropriate illustration on the verso depicting a school activity, with a picture opposite demonstrating how that activity would play out when his teacher holds the reins in Washington. For example, "She's used to being followed everywhere" shows the class parading after her in line, while on the right, secret service agents and cameramen tag along as she jogs. Winters keeps these parallels both humorous and pithy, and Brunkus's cheery, color cartoons add to the fun. Oliver's appreciation of his teacher (she can only be president if she doesn't leave before the end of the year) is refreshing. An enjoyable and timely read-aloud, and good fodder for discussion.-Grace Oliff, Ann Blanche Smith School, Hillsdale, NJ Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Inspired by TV reports about the upcoming presidential election, a second grader named Oliver catalogues why his beloved teacher, Mrs. Robbins, is ideal for the job. The fun arises from the way Brunkus (the Junie B. Jones books) visually structures the book. On the left side of each spread, she offers a snapshot, framed in a lined-paper border, of Mrs. Robbins (who resembles a slimmed-down version of Barbara Bush) navigating a typical school day with aplomb; on the right, a realistically rendered full-bleed picture shows how President Robbins would apply the same talents and experience to leading the nation. "She's used to being followed everywhere," reports Oliver, as Mrs. Robbins leads a slightly unruly line of students down the hall (posters of past presidents decorate the walls). On the opposite page, President Robbins jogs with her dog, surrounded by an entourage of media people and secret service agents. In a nifty added touch, the artist depicts Oliver as President Robbins's bow-tied but still kid-size aide de camp. But Oliver's nomination has one condition: "Just make sure she doesn't leave before the end of the year." Winters's (Abe Lincoln: The Boy Who Loved Books) narrative set in type that appears handwritten retains a second-grader's simplicity, directness and idealism ("She finds jobs for people.... She believes in peace"). The result is unexpectedly poignant, capturing how unflappable, dedicated teachers such as Mrs. Robbins are commanders-in-chief of not only their classrooms but also their students' hearts. Ages 5-up. (Sept.) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
?An enjoyable and timely read-aloud, and good fodder for
discussions.? ?"School Library Journal"