The King of Kindergarten
A confident little boy takes pride in his first day of kindergarten.The morning sun blares through your window like a million brass trumpets.It sits and shines behind your head--like a crown. Mommy says that today, you are going to be the King of Kindergarten!Starting kindergarten is a big milestone--and the hero of this story is ready to make his mark! He's dressed himself, eaten a pile of pancakes, and can't wait to be part of a whole new kingdom of kids. The day will be jam-packed, but he's up to the challenge, taking new experiences in stride with his infectious enthusiasm! And afterward, he can't wait to tell his proud parents all about his achievements--and then wake up to start another day.

The King of Kindergarten Details

TitleThe King of Kindergarten
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseJul 2nd, 2019
PublisherNancy Paulsen Books
ISBN-139781524740740
Rating
GenreChildrens, Picture Books, Academic, School, Back To School, Fiction

The King of Kindergarten Review

  • Emma (Miss Print)
    January 1, 1970
    Say hello to my new favorite first day of school book. This is such a gentle introduction to what to expect in a Kindergarten classroom and it is such a sweet story about making friends and putting positive energy into the world knowing it will come back to you. Ah. I love it so much, I need to go lie down to recover. And, of course, the artwork is stunning and as charming as the story.
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  • Jillian Heise
    January 1, 1970
    I 💚 this book! The lyrical coolness of Derrick Barnes's (Crown: An Ode to the Fresh Cut) words combined with the exuberant joyfulness of Vanessa Brantley-Newton's illustrations makes for a perfect start of the school year read aloud.
  • La Coccinelle
    January 1, 1970
    I thought I would enjoy this one more than I actually did. Don't get me wrong; it's a cute book. But the whole "royal" gimmick seems kind of unnecessary (and aimed more at adults than kids), and with a child who has a different understanding of what being king means, the premise could be potentially problematic.The narration is a bit odd, to begin with. It almost sounds like it's one of the parents talking to the child, but both parents are referred to in the third person, so it's obviously some I thought I would enjoy this one more than I actually did. Don't get me wrong; it's a cute book. But the whole "royal" gimmick seems kind of unnecessary (and aimed more at adults than kids), and with a child who has a different understanding of what being king means, the premise could be potentially problematic.The narration is a bit odd, to begin with. It almost sounds like it's one of the parents talking to the child, but both parents are referred to in the third person, so it's obviously somebody else. (Who? I have no idea.) The boy wakes up and goes about getting ready for school. This part of the book makes references to Chiclets and Osh Kosh (as if all 4- and 5-years olds are going to understand what those signify). Then the boy is off to school.The problem I see with telling a child that they're the King of Kindergarten is that, if they have an idea of a king as someone who issues orders and expects to be obeyed, they're going to be in for a rough first day. In the case of this book, being king refers more to mastery than it does ruling... but I don't know if children this young are going to have such a nuanced view of royalty. The boy in the story is kind, polite, generous, and thoughtful, which are all great things to model. But it makes me wonder if the whole king thing is even necessary, since it might add a bit of confusion to what is, otherwise, a sweet story about the first day of school. (Making him a knight rather than a king might have made more sense in this context.)I might have some problems with the text, but I don't really have any issues with the illustrations. They're absolutely adorable! The boy and his classmates are all portrayed with bright, colourful diversity. This is the third book I've read that was illustrated by Brantley-Newton, and I think I like the illustrations here the best.Overall, I think whether this book works for kids will depend on their concept of what a king is. For those who think it's all about power, it might not work. But for those who have an expanded concept of what it means to be a king, this could be a winner.Quotable moment:
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  • Abigail
    January 1, 1970
    A young boy, dubbed the "King of Kindergarten" by his loving mother, heads to school for his very first day in this sweet picture-book from author Derrick D. Barnes and illustrator Vanessa Brantley-Newton. Once there he has a wonderful time, getting to know his new teacher and making friends with his fellow pupils. By the end of the day he is ready to return home, full of exciting news to share with his parents...Having enjoyed Barnes' Newbery Honor-winning picture-book, Crown: An Ode to the Fr A young boy, dubbed the "King of Kindergarten" by his loving mother, heads to school for his very first day in this sweet picture-book from author Derrick D. Barnes and illustrator Vanessa Brantley-Newton. Once there he has a wonderful time, getting to know his new teacher and making friends with his fellow pupils. By the end of the day he is ready to return home, full of exciting news to share with his parents...Having enjoyed Barnes' Newbery Honor-winning picture-book, Crown: An Ode to the Fresh Cut , I was curious to pick up The King of Kindergarten, which is only my second title from this author. All in all, I found it an engaging and ultimately heartwarming "first day of school" story, one with a positive, upbeat message for nervous young children. The artwork from Vanessa Brantley-Newton was charming - colorful and cute. Recommended to anyone looking for new books about going to school/kindergarten for the first time.
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  • Brenda Kahn
    January 1, 1970
    Exuberantly illustrated story of a little boy who's excited to go to kindergarten. Absolutely delightful.
  • Alicia
    January 1, 1970
    A picture book that works for those jitters that kids might have entering school or a new grade, this one features a boy going in to his first day of kindergarten and figuring out a way to capture the excitement of meeting new people, having fun, enjoying the experience, and having the support of family. He'll do fine! He's got a superb teacher who lets them have fun and still take a nap, he dares to ask a girl to play during recess and shares his pudding with another friend, and in the end, he' A picture book that works for those jitters that kids might have entering school or a new grade, this one features a boy going in to his first day of kindergarten and figuring out a way to capture the excitement of meeting new people, having fun, enjoying the experience, and having the support of family. He'll do fine! He's got a superb teacher who lets them have fun and still take a nap, he dares to ask a girl to play during recess and shares his pudding with another friend, and in the end, he'll return tomorrow to have more fun. It's lovely and sentimental in a way that all "first day" books are.
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  • Andrew
    January 1, 1970
    A young boy starts his first day of kindergarten like royalty-- confident, friendly, and ready to learn. There are no nerves here! Colorful, gorgeous illustrations on every page, and filled with nothing but kindness and excitement, with beautiful textured backgrounds that add so much to the joyful mood. Wonderfully inspiring book to help you feel like kindergarten royalty!
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  • Yapha
    January 1, 1970
    The perfect book to read to anyone about to start kindergarten. Fun and empowering!
  • Christina Carter
    January 1, 1970
    The King of Kindergarten makes my heart melt to see this brilliant Black boy shining with his smile so bright, donning his crown just right. He’s a big boy now, doing big boy things-all by himself! Just the way his mom and dad had prepared him to. When the first day of kindergarten arrives, he is so ready. He washes his face, gets dressed on his own and boards the bus with confidence. He meets his new teacher, says his name with pride, makes new friends and learns new things that he can’t wait t The King of Kindergarten makes my heart melt to see this brilliant Black boy shining with his smile so bright, donning his crown just right. He’s a big boy now, doing big boy things-all by himself! Just the way his mom and dad had prepared him to. When the first day of kindergarten arrives, he is so ready. He washes his face, gets dressed on his own and boards the bus with confidence. He meets his new teacher, says his name with pride, makes new friends and learns new things that he can’t wait to tell his parents about when he gets home. He had a very good day and can’t wait to do it all over again.Starting kindergarten is a big deal! As parents, we do everything we can to help get our babies ready and when the time finally comes, we’d be hard-pressed to distinguish who is the most anxious about it all; us parents or our children? The King of Kindergarten will encourage every little one who is getting ready for their first day of kindergarten and it might even get their parents ready too. What I loved most about this book was that it was clear that this little boy’s parents clothed him with so much love, joy, encouragement, and a positive self-image. It is something that he carries with him in his heart and mind throughout his day. It is made evident in each of Vanessa Brantley-Newton’s illustrations that he exudes unquestionable confidence. You can see it in his smile and in the way he keeps his head held high.I highly recommend The King of Kindergarten for families, kindergarten classrooms, and the library (school and public libraries). Honestly, I added this book to my 2019-2020 library order before I’d even read it because of how much I enjoyed Crown: an Ode to the Fresh Cut (that won all manner of awards: Newbery Honor Award, Coretta Scott King Honor Award, and the 2018 Ezra Jack Keats Award). Trust your librarians. We have a knack for finding great books like this one for families and classrooms to enjoy.
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  • Effie
    January 1, 1970
    This is a great, positive introduction to kindergarten. I think the emphasis on being the king of kindergarten gives a special boost of confidence and ownership to kids, while I also appreciate that they're at a round table and sharing, with the messages "Be awesome" "we are kind to each other" on the chalk board behind them. I love the humor in the writing of Derrick Barnes ("You'll use a golden brush to clean Ye Royal Chiclets.") The artwork by Vanessa Brantley-Newton takes it up a notch and m This is a great, positive introduction to kindergarten. I think the emphasis on being the king of kindergarten gives a special boost of confidence and ownership to kids, while I also appreciate that they're at a round table and sharing, with the messages "Be awesome" "we are kind to each other" on the chalk board behind them. I love the humor in the writing of Derrick Barnes ("You'll use a golden brush to clean Ye Royal Chiclets.") The artwork by Vanessa Brantley-Newton takes it up a notch and makes it extra-special. Kids will love this. It would make me excited to start kindergarten!
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  • Maria Marshall
    January 1, 1970
    This is an uplifting, exuberant book about making friends, playing together, sharing, and loving school. In a great example of the collaboration between the author and the illustrator, Vanessa translates Derrick's "royal" text into a child's joyful "modern" experience of the first day of school. It is perfect for summer reading before starting school or with children nervous about making new friends. It is also a great book for expanding a child's vocabulary. I was thrilled to see Derrick infuse This is an uplifting, exuberant book about making friends, playing together, sharing, and loving school. In a great example of the collaboration between the author and the illustrator, Vanessa translates Derrick's "royal" text into a child's joyful "modern" experience of the first day of school. It is perfect for summer reading before starting school or with children nervous about making new friends. It is also a great book for expanding a child's vocabulary. I was thrilled to see Derrick infused the story with words like garments, majestic, delighted, arise, and magnificent. A delightful book about empowering a child's self-esteem. You don't want to miss this new book by two powerhouse creatives.
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  • Bonnie Grover
    January 1, 1970
    My new favorite book for the first day of school, particularly primary grades. I love the pictures and the magnificent comparisons to the royal life of school. I think the authors did a great job explaining the first days of school. They found ways to explain away the anxiety every student experiences. A great book for courage, confidence, character-centeredness, and friendship. This book is going to be a great addition to any teacher’s shelves.
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  • Michele Knott
    January 1, 1970
    This will be one of those iconic books that you read at the start of every school year.Doesn't matter if you're in kindergarten or not, the universal hopes that come along with the start of every school year makes this a timeless book.
  • Lynn
    January 1, 1970
    Sweet story of a little boy totally confident about how wonderful kindergarten will be. No first day nerves here ;-) A great choice to reinforce happy expectations and banish fears.
  • Bethany M. Edwards
    January 1, 1970
    There are almost no children's books about Black boys starting school, or being successful at school. Enter dream team Children's Book Author Derrick Barnes and Vanessa Brantley-Newton with their next book, THE KING OF KINDERGARTEN! Just like CROWN: ODE TO THE FRESH CUT, the cover star is one of his sons, Prince Nnamdi. Having a Barnes as the protagonist and feature a beautiful Black boy with a regal theme is just too sweet for words.Having met both the author and illustrator I can tell you that There are almost no children's books about Black boys starting school, or being successful at school. Enter dream team Children's Book Author Derrick Barnes and Vanessa Brantley-Newton with their next book, THE KING OF KINDERGARTEN! Just like CROWN: ODE TO THE FRESH CUT, the cover star is one of his sons, Prince Nnamdi. Having a Barnes as the protagonist and feature a beautiful Black boy with a regal theme is just too sweet for words.Having met both the author and illustrator I can tell you that their friendship is real and they support each other 100%. It makes buying this book and shouting from the rooftops an easy decision. The infectious enthusiasm coupled with fiery independence as he goes to "real" school is gold. I love the humor of royal language used with the morning routine. From using a "golden toothbrush to clean Ye Royal Chicklets" to the "garments from far off villages of Osh and Kosh", this book is meant to be loved and read over and over again.Thank you to Penguin Random House for my copy of this book. All opinions are my own.
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  • Laurie Hnatiuk
    January 1, 1970
    Right from the opening quote from Benjamin Mays, the reader knows they are in for something special - that we are all capable of doing kind and praiseworthy things. The story begins with a mother informing her son that today he will be the King of Kindergarten and proceeds to talk of the successful day ahead of him so when the boy arrives he is confident, capable and caring. We experience the day through the eyes of this young boy with bright vibrant illustrations and text befitting for a king. Right from the opening quote from Benjamin Mays, the reader knows they are in for something special - that we are all capable of doing kind and praiseworthy things. The story begins with a mother informing her son that today he will be the King of Kindergarten and proceeds to talk of the successful day ahead of him so when the boy arrives he is confident, capable and caring. We experience the day through the eyes of this young boy with bright vibrant illustrations and text befitting for a king. The real beauty of this picture book is that no matter what grade, work place or scenario you find yourself in - you too can be brave by inviting someone new, share something to another in need, rest dance and sing and be the King of Kindergarten. This is a timeless book that will be used year after year.
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  • Sara
    January 1, 1970
    This book is a treasure for any child heading back to school. A young boy goes to school, as if he is King of Kindergarten, including his very own yellow chariot to school. He explores all of the new things a child goes through including all the feelings that the first day of school brings with it. Derrick Barnes' writing matched with Vanessa Branley-Newton's illustrations go together like peanut butter and jelly! They just mesh perfectly! Brantley-Newton's details within her images are perfect! This book is a treasure for any child heading back to school. A young boy goes to school, as if he is King of Kindergarten, including his very own yellow chariot to school. He explores all of the new things a child goes through including all the feelings that the first day of school brings with it. Derrick Barnes' writing matched with Vanessa Branley-Newton's illustrations go together like peanut butter and jelly! They just mesh perfectly! Brantley-Newton's details within her images are perfect! I am so excited to share this with my students for #cbadspotlight as an #ownvoices book. Thank you to Nancy Paulsen Books/Penguin Kids for giving a copy of this incredible book to our ARC reading #collaBOOKation group!
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  • Margie
    January 1, 1970
    There are books you read filled with so much joy it cloaks you in an invisible shield for days. Wherever you go and whatever you do, the fire started inside you by that book's jubilation is with you. You cannot help but glow on the inside and on the outside. It gives you positive power.When you have this kind of positive power born of pure bliss, it radiates from you to others. It changes perspectives. The King of Kindergarten (Nancy Paulsen Books, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC, July 2, There are books you read filled with so much joy it cloaks you in an invisible shield for days. Wherever you go and whatever you do, the fire started inside you by that book's jubilation is with you. You cannot help but glow on the inside and on the outside. It gives you positive power.When you have this kind of positive power born of pure bliss, it radiates from you to others. It changes perspectives. The King of Kindergarten (Nancy Paulsen Books, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC, July 2, 2019) written by Derrick Barnes with illustrations by Vanessa Brantley-Newton is a book filled with this kind of joy. You want to laugh and dance and sing. You send a wish out into the universe for every child to know this happiness.My full recommendation: https://librariansquest.blogspot.com/...
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  • Laura
    January 1, 1970
    A fantastic book to share with children getting ready to start kindergarten. I love that the story not only builds confidence but also addresses positive ways to interact with others. The young boy in the story is proud and excited about starting school. He's also ready to make friends and share with others. A sweet and positive story and totally recommended for kids heading off to start school. My daughter loved this book, though we're both hoping for a follow up about the Queen of Kindergarten A fantastic book to share with children getting ready to start kindergarten. I love that the story not only builds confidence but also addresses positive ways to interact with others. The young boy in the story is proud and excited about starting school. He's also ready to make friends and share with others. A sweet and positive story and totally recommended for kids heading off to start school. My daughter loved this book, though we're both hoping for a follow up about the Queen of Kindergarten.
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  • Cheryl
    January 1, 1970
    I liked the upbeat illustrations, the teacher seemed kind and fun, and there will be friends and fun things to do. I didn't like the assumption that the reader will do all of the things that the main character does (wear Oshkosh? take the bus? take a nap?) Also, the "King" theme--does that mean you're the boss of everyone too? Perhaps I've talked to too many teachers who describe a student as "he thinks he's the king"--everything revolves around them syndrome. I'm still looking for more upbeat I liked the upbeat illustrations, the teacher seemed kind and fun, and there will be friends and fun things to do. I didn't like the assumption that the reader will do all of the things that the main character does (wear Oshkosh? take the bus? take a nap?) Also, the "King" theme--does that mean you're the boss of everyone too? Perhaps I've talked to too many teachers who describe a student as "he thinks he's the king"--everything revolves around them syndrome. I'm still looking for more upbeat books about going to school (loved The Pigeon Has to Go to School!)
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  • Jana
    January 1, 1970
    Starting kindergarten is so exciting for everyone - kids, parents, teachers! This awesome picture book is a great celebration of the first day of school with gorgeous illustrations and warm, comforting text that employs authentic language that most children will be able to recognize from their own families. This is definitely a must-read for the first days of school, especially for those with special kindergartners around!
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  • Pam
    January 1, 1970
    Getting ready for the first day of school. Mom builds a young boy's confidence as he heads for the first day of kindergarten. Barnes shares a variety of activities children experience during a typical school day. This child is brave enough to talk to other kids, share his lunch, listen to the teacher, etc. I'm not fond of the connotations with the title King but the story works to boost confidence in young readers.
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  • Mandy
    January 1, 1970
    Childrens picture book. This story is about a young black boy starting kindergarten. His parents have told him to act like the king of kindergarten, and instead of making him arrogant and entitled this gives him confidence. He proudly tells the teacher his name, greets the other students at his table with ease, and bravely asks a new friend to play at recess. If only all students could start school with this same level of confidence.
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  • Jessica
    January 1, 1970
    I was a bit worried that the main character would interpret being the "king of kindergarten" (the title his mother gave him) as being a bossy snot BUT no! He was kind and thoughtful and generous - the perfect example to read about at the beginning of school. I took a star off because of the inclusion of nap time - unfortunately, nap/rest in K is long gone in my part of the world. Recommended.
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  • Danielle
    January 1, 1970
    This book has a lovely story and very nice pictures. It is very specific, a story about a boy's first day at Kindergarten. I would only use this book in a storytime if I could pair it with a story about a girl's first day doing something as well. It is definitely for older preschoolers or new kindergartners or good for a one-on-one reading.
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  • Lisa
    January 1, 1970
    A boy is beginning his first day of kindergarten. From the moment he wakes and throughout his day of learning and interacting with friends, the boy exudes confidence and enthusiasm. Showing the delights and possibilities that the first day of school can bring, this book can help to ease first day jitters. The book reads like poetry and the illustrations are bright and joyful.
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  • Kim Harris
    January 1, 1970
    As a boy prepares for his first day of school he does so with confidence because he is the King of Kindergarten. He goes through this bright new day with a majestic smile, meeting his teacher and new friends, learning about letters and numbers and defeating a dragon at recess. The illustrations are bright and beautifully done. I can’t wait to recommend it to my kindergarten team.
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  • Nadia L. Hohn
    January 1, 1970
    I'm such a huge fan of illustrator Vanessa Brantley Newton''s work that I'll give 5 stars to any book she illustrates. Author Derrick Barnes comes up strong with an equally poetic picture book (I loved his award-winning Crown). These illustrations are so affirming. The
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  • Kathy Iwanicki
    January 1, 1970
    I was lucky enough to receive an ARC of this adorable book. You cannot help but smile when you read it! My wish is that all students enter their classroom with this swag and confidence. Must for anyone entering kindergarten!
  • Racheal
    January 1, 1970
    The story is 5-star all the way, but Vanessa Brantley-Newton's illustrations are always a little hit-or-miss for me. The characters are always really cute, but sometimes (like here) the overall the artwork feels rushed, with lots of backgrounds that look very low-resolution and computer generated.
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