August 31, 2011

Back to school

by Avi

When her one-room school unexpectedly closes, Ida Bidson’s wish to go to high school seems dashed. But her friend Tom gets an idea: Ida can be the teacher! It seems like an unbelievable plan, but her parents are willing to let her try and her classmates agree to it. They just have to keep it a secret otherwise Mr. Jordan, the head of the school board, will shut them down.

Ida finds it difficult to teach and do her chores at the same time. It’s also hard for her to study. But with her students all working together, she manages to keep going. When news of the secret school gets out, the townspeople are surprisingly supportive.

Avi has written a very cheerful, positive story, with little conflict. Only one parent truly objects; the rest let their kids do whatever they want. But then, children were much more independent in 1925. Ida even drives to school, though she cannot reach the pedals. Her seven-year-old brother, Felix, works the brake and clutch.

A good, easy read for kids who like happy endings.

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