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|Sarabella's thinking cap|
Author: Schachner, Judith Byron
Sarabella spends so much time thinking that she has a hard time focusing in school until an understanding teacher finds a way to help.
|Accelerated Reader Information:|
Interest Level: LG
Reading Level: 4.00
Points: .5 Quiz: 192346
|Reading Counts Information:|
Interest Level: K-2
Reading Level: 3.20
Points: 1.0 Quiz: 75327
Kirkus Reviews (07/01/17)
School Library Journal (09/01/17)
Full Text Reviews:
School Library Journal - 09/01/2017 PreS-Gr 2—Sarabella daydreams constantly but doesn't communicate her thoughts. Her parents, creative types themselves, don't share her teacher's concern that she needs to focus more in school. Her puppet-loving older sister suggests she "take deep breaths and squint" to facilitate concentration, but this just results in a dizzy spell and visit to the school nurse. Finally, a weekend assignment requiring students to draw their thoughts prompts the youngster to follow the advice of the beautiful whale living in her imagination: "To share it, you've/ just got to wear it." After much coloring, cutting, and pasting, she arrives at school wearing a hat containing "the most spectacular collection of doodles and daydreams." The lengthy text includes phrases like "Seeds of ideas" printed in grass and words such as "reason," "reflect," and "ponder" in a flower pot. The colorful illustrations, executed in acrylics, gouache, collage, and mixed media, depict Sarabella's daydreams in huge bubbles containing a cornucopia of objects. Her hat is so remarkable that it stretches across a spread. In humorous contrast, her cat appears repeatedly sporting the same thought: fish. This child has "a green thumb for thinking." Yet this is problematic in school where her teacher, though kind, repeatedly requests that she focus on her work instead of allowing her to learn in her own way. The scene in which she draws her thoughts reveals a distressed girl with "an upset tummy." VERDICT While Sarabella's ideas, seen through Schachner's dazzling illustrations, are presented as wonderfully imaginative, Peter Reynolds's Happy Dreamer offers a much more exuberant dreamer and encouragement for readers to follow his example.—Marianne Saccardi, Children's Literature Consultant, Cambridge, MA - Copyright 2017 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.
Booklist - 10/01/2017 This gentle book provides support for every child who daydreams in school and a wake-up call for her or his teachers. Sarabella is a brown-haired, brown-eyed girl who lives almost entirely in her own head. The illustrations, done in acrylics, gouache, collage, and mixed media, show what an entertaining place this can be. Sarabella is always thinking: big thoughts (illustrated by an elephant filled with the cosmos); small thoughts (a snail at the corner of a page); and in-between thoughts (rendered as a huge thought bubble crowded with a collage of Victorian-era illustrations and cheerfully childlike drawings). Her artistically inclined family fully support her, saying “You have daydreams in your DNA.” But school, which demands focus, is the rub. The inspired resolution comes from a sympathetic teacher’s assignment for students to draw their thoughts. Sarabella’s magnificent creation is a vibrant assemblage of photos, stamps, doodles, and stickers that illustrates her thoughts and becomes a classroom hit. A lovely celebration of creativity and a different learning style. - Copyright 2017 Booklist.