A box arrived at Schoolmates last week—a box of new books the staff had ordered. It felt like Christmas in November. Melissa opened the box and we all ohh’d and ahh’d as each book was pulled from it.
“This one is beautiful.”
“Look at these illustrations.”
“What other books did she write?
Books are such a nifty package—the covers and inside pages hold art, a story, often a lesson, and inspiration for further teaching. What a deal.
The first book from the box that we read to the Explorers was Flight School, by Lita Judge. A penguin drives a motorboat to flight school—a set of pilings in the water. On the pilings perch an array of colorful birds waiting for their first lesson. The penguin arrives and declares, “I have the soul of an eagle.” The teachers are doubtful but let him stay and take flying lessons.
Judge’s illustrations are colorful, detailed, and full of personality. Her skillful use of perspective and scale move the story along with playful drama that begs the reader to look carefully at each page.
Flight School is a story of compassion, friendship, and teamwork. This amazing collection of characters accomplish the almost impossible when they work together to help a friend.