All Are Welcome: Welcome Back! (Step Into Reading: Step 2 Reading With Help)

by Alexandra Penfold (Author) Suzanne Kaufman (Illustrator)

A back-to-school celebration featuring the beloved characters from the New York Times-bestselling All Are Welcome!

This Step 2 early reader is perfect for emerging readers who are excited to learn more at school.

The sun is up. The day has begun.

It's back to school

For everyone!

The kids from All Are Welcome are heading back to school and eager to see old friends, make new friends, and learn to be readers, writers, listeners, and leaders. Three things they keep in mind: Always try. Have fun. Be kind.

Step 2 Readers use basic vocabulary and short sentences to tell simple stories. They are ideal for children who recognize familiar words and can sound out new words with help. Perfect for children who are ready to read on their own!

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School Library Journal

PreS-Gr 1--It's the first day of school, and despite the inevitable nerves, everyone is ready to reunite and begin a positive new year. As the sun rises, children all over town are getting dressed, eating breakfast, and finding their way to a new classroom. They settle in with a new teacher, prepared to learn, share, and grow, while welcoming everyone to their supportive educational environment. This early reader is well-suited to its target age group: the narrative appears in rhyming couplets and short phrases that are sometimes presented all together on one page or separated out among several. Thus, the text offers ample white space to encourage fledgling readers to advance with confidence from one page to the next. Within the rhyming sentences are familiar words with occasional challenging vocabulary peppered throughout. Though the pacing of each line is not symmetrical from one page to the next, the narrative flows smoothly for newer readers. Children will enjoy the cheerful and inclusive illustrations that accompany the text, especially as characters with a wide range of skin tones, cultural backgrounds, and abilities are depicted. All are welcome in this classroom, and the visual component is a testament to that fact. VERDICT Approachable and inclusive, this early reader provides just enough of a challenge for young children who are preparing to enter a positive new school year.--Mary Lanni

Copyright 2023 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

Review quotes

Alexandra Penfold
Alexandra Penfold is the author of Eat, Sleep, Poop (Knopf, 2016) and the forthcoming picture books The Littlest Viking (Knopf) and Everybody's Going to the Food Truck Fest (FSG). She is also a literary agent at Upstart Crow, where one of her clients is Suzanne Kaufman! Learn more about Alex on Twitter at @agentpenfold.

Suzanne Kaufman is an author, illustrator, and animator. Over the years she's done everything from animating special effects for Universal Television and the Discovery Channel to animating award-winning video games for children. She's the illustrator of a number of books for children including Samanthasaurus Rex by B. B. Mandell, the forthcoming Naughty Claudine by Patrick Jennings, 100 Bugs by Kate Narita and her own book, Confiscated! among others. Learn more about Suzanne online at or on Twitter at @lilmonkeydraws.
Lexile Measure
Guided Reading Level
Random House Books for Young Readers
Publication date
June 20, 2023
Step Into Reading: Step 2 Reading With Help
BISAC categories
JUV039090 - Juvenile Fiction | Social Themes | New Experience
JUV035000 - Juvenile Fiction | School & Education
Library of Congress categories
Stories in rhyme
First day of school
School fiction

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