Casting Her Ballot: Amelia Bedelia's First Vote by Herman Parish
"WHY ARE YOU RUNNING?" THE NURSE ASKED.
"WE'RE HAVING AN ELECTION!" SAID AMELIA BEDELIA.
"I SEE," SAID NURSE SIMS. "WHAT ARE YOU RUNNING FOR?"
"THE OFFICE," SAID AMELIA BEDELIA.
"OF COURSE," SAID NURSE SIMS. "WHICH ONE?"
"THAT ONE!" SAID AMELIA BEDELIA, POINTING TO THE SCHOOL OFFICE.
In one of little Amelia Bedelia's continuing skirmishes with the idioms of the English language, grade one is having their first class election in Herman Parish's latest, Amelia Bedelia's First Vote (Greenwillow, 2012).
Why do we calling trying to get elected "running for an office?" Like many first graders, six-year-old Amelia Bedelia knows running is something not to be done in school, and the office is where you get sent if you misbehave or feel really sick. But it's a whole new ballgame when it is time to have a classroom vote, and as usual, Amelia Bedelia brings her own outspoken viewpoint energetically to the challenge.
Since there seems to be some confusion about this "running" in school, Amelia Bedelia's suggestion to the principal, Mr. K., is that the kids vote on school rules themselves. He agrees, but a tie follows, resulting in a runoff vote (no running allowed) between daily ice cream in the cafeteria, backed by Teddy, and homework-free Wednesday, backed by Amelia Bedelia. Two contentious parties emerge, and when recess rolls around, Amelia Bedelia takes on the opposition in the race directly--a race outside around the building--which results in another collision and another trip to see Nurse Sims.
"THAT RUN-OFF WAS MORE LIKE A RUN-OVER," SAID AMELIA.
But just then, a news flash comes in. Dawn, out sick for the day, sends a request for her make-up work and a message that her vote is on the side of homework-free Wednesdays, and Amelia Bedelia's party squeaks by with a marginal win on the basis of the absentee vote.
"CONGRATULATIONS, AMELIA BEDELIA!" SAID MR. K. "DO YOU HAVE ANYTHING TO ADD?"
"I WILL... WHEN WE DO ARITHMETIC," SAID AMELIA BEDELIA.
Cheerily illustrated by Lynn Avril, this latest in the young Amelia Bedelia series provides an opportunity for young readers to begin learning the initially confusing lingo of elections--"running for office," "run-offs," and a "tie" (not the dreary ones Principal K. usually wears with his suits to work). Other "first-time" books in this spin-off series include Amelia Bedelia's First Day of School, Amelia Bedelia's First Field Trip, Amelia Bedelia's First Apple Pie, and Amelia Bedelia's First Valentine.