Cover image for Class act / by Kelly Starling Lyons ; illustrated by Vanessa Brantley Newton.
Class act / by Kelly Starling Lyons ; illustrated by Vanessa Brantley Newton.
Publication Information:
New York : Grosset and Dunlap, 2017.

Physical Description:
88 pages : illustrations ; 20 cm


Call Number
Material Type
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LYO Paperback Junior 'I Can Read'
LYO Paperback Junior 'I Can Read'

On Order



Fans of Princess Posey and Ivy and Bean will enjoy rooting for Jada Jones as she runs for student council in this easy-to-read chapter book.

As a candidate for class representative, Jada is ready to give the campaign her all. But when rumors start to fly about her secret fear of public speaking, she isn't sure who she can trust. And the pressure to make promises she can't keep only adds to her growing list of problems. Is winning even worth it when friendships are on the line?

This easy-to-read story--with plenty of pictures and a charming, relatable cast of characters--is a sure winner. The early chapter book bridges between leveled readers and chapter books for fluent readers adjusting to the chapter book format. At about 5,000 words, with short chapters and two-color art on almost every page, it will appeal to this unique reader. The two-color art throughout will help readers transition from the familiar four-color art of leveled readers and ease them into black-and-white chapter books.

Author Notes

Kelly Starling Lyons is the author of Hope's Gift and Tea Cakes for Tosh . She lives in North Carolina with her husband and daughter and son.

Vanessa Brantley Newton is a self-taught artist with a great passion for children's books and fashion illustration. As an illustrator, she includes children of all ethnic backgrounds in her artwork so that every child sees their unique experience reflected in the stories they read. She celebrates self-love and acceptance of all cultures through her work, and hopes to inspire young readers to find their own voices. Vanessa has illustrated over 30 books, and has written and illustrated the picture books Let Freedom Sing and Don't Let Auntie Mabel Bless The Table . She lives in Charlotte, North Carolina with her husband and daughter, and a crazy cat named Stripes.

Reviews 1

Horn Book Review

Lyons's new early reader series stars African American fourth grader Jada, who makes new friends through rock-collecting (Rock Star) and runs for student council (Class Act). Readers will admire and relate to smart, sincere Jada, who does the right thing even when it's hard. Newton's purple-accented black-and-white illustrations of Jada and her diverse group of classmates are warm and expressive. [Review covers these Jada Jones titles: Class Act and Rock Star.] (c) Copyright 2019. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.



Chapter One: Friendly Competition     After the Pledge of Allegiance and announcements, Miss Taylor hit a silver chime with a small mallet. Chirrr! A high-pitched tone rang through our classroom. We hustled from our desks to sit in a circle on the orange-and-blue carpet. It was time for our morning meeting.   "Today is your chance to make a difference," Miss Taylor belted like a singer on TV. As she stretched out her arms, her bangles tinkled in harmony. We cheered for her performance. "Do I have your attention?" she asked, beaming.   We smiled and nodded.   "Good. I have wonderful news: It's time to nominate a buddy or yourself to run for student council!"   Giggles and whispers rippled like a wave, spreading from one student to the next. Lena nudged my arm. Simone smiled and pointed at me across the circle.   I grinned, and my heart beat a little faster. Representing your class was a big deal. You got to come up with ideas to make the school better. You got to help plan events. You made sure your class had a voice. I wanted to run. But could I do it? I grabbed one of my braids and twisted it back and forth, back and forth around my finger as I thought it over.    "Class, class!" Miss Taylor called.   "Yes, yes." Instantly everyone quieted.   "I know you're excited," she said. "Let's talk about the qualities we'd like our student council representative to have."   Carson raised his hand first.   "Someone fair," he said.   "Somebody who knows what our class likes," Gabi offered.   I raised my hand.   "Someone who works hard and cares."   "Great list," Miss Taylor said. "We also want someone who can keep up with their schoolwork and student council responsibilities, like meeting after school, pitching in on projects, being a leader, and showing Brookside pride. Who can tell me what that means?"   "Positivity, respect, integrity, drive, and excellence," we all answered together.   "That's right," she said, smiling. "Being on student council is a lot of hard work, but it's a special honor. Okay, do we have any nomin--"   "Jada!" Simone hollered before she even finished.   My classmates clapped, and Lena hugged me around my shoulders.    "Miles!" RJ shouted. He was one of Miles's best friends and always had his back.   I applauded with the others as Miles high-fived and fist-bumped the kids sitting next to him. We were always the top two in science--our favorite subject. It would be fun running for student council with him. No matter what, we cheered each other on.   "Anybody else?"   She looked around our circle, pausing on each face. No takers.   "Jada and Miles, do you accept the nominations?"   We smiled at each other. My rainbow beads clacked and danced as I nodded.    "Okay, we have our candidates," Miss Taylor said, and handed each of us a blue paper that we and our parents had to sign. "This pledge has all of the guidelines. No put-downs. No promises you can't keep. You have to make a poster with your campaign slogan and show respect to everyone who's running. And this year, we're doing something new. All of the fourth-grade candidates will get to give their speeches in the auditorium."   In the auditorium? I wrapped my braid around my finger and unwound it, twirled it and untwirled it, over and over.   "It will be great practice for fifth grade, when you can run for an office like president or vice president. That's when you can represent not just your class, but the whole school."   I couldn't even focus on the rest of what Miss Taylor said. I'd have no problem making the poster, but giving a speech to the whole fourth grade? Talk about torture. I sighed and curled my braid around my finger again. What had I gotten myself into? Excerpted from Class Act #2 by Kelly Starling Lyons All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.