Prepublication Reviews and Expertly Selected Title Lists

The Pout-Pout Fish Goes to School by Deborah Diesen and Illustrated by Dan Hanna

Pout-Pout Fish Goes to SchoolAuthor Deborah Diesen and illustrator Dan Hanna have teamed up again to craft a new and wonderful story. The picture book weaves together a delightful narrative, with subtle learning reinforcements such as spelling, counting and shapes, and culminates with an inspiring message to children.

This relatable tale details Mr. Fish’s nerve-racking first day of school, where he excitedly rushes in only to get lost among the older students and classrooms. Mr. Fish tries to navigate his own way but stumbles into a series of unfit classrooms that are too far above his level. Discouraged by his undeveloped skills he lists off the reasons why he should give up such as: I’m not smart, I’ll never get it, I don’t belong, and I should forget it.

These attempts and failures occur multiple times in a row throughout the day as he wanders into writing class, drawing class, and math class before finally giving up and making an exasperated swim for the exit.

Just as all hope seems lost, Mr. Fish’s assigned teacher, Miss Hewitt finds him and shows him where he belongs – The Kinderguppy Class for Brand New Fish. In this classroom Mr. Fish feels comfortable working alongside peers at his skill level and Miss Hewitt is an encouraging and helpful teacher. The students learn inspirational truths about themselves such as: You are smart, You can get it, You belong, and Don’t forget it!

With clever and engaging illustrations, this is a great lesson about overcoming self doubt and learning to be patient while developing new skills.

– Elizabeth

Order in Bibz.


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