Captain Freddy Counts Down to School

It’s Freddy’s first day of school, and he needs to get ready. But school is big, it’s far away, and it’s full of strangers. Luckily, Freddy remembers he has work to do—in space! When his mom reminds him to put on his shoes, he pulls on his moon boots instead and blasts off. Captain Freddy’s adventures in space may just make him ready for his big day back on Earth.
Beautifully illustrated by Joey Chou, this picture book introduces information about our solar system in a fun, read-aloud story that prepares young children for exciting explorations at school…and beyond!

ISBN: 9781503950955

AGES: 3-7




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Fun Stuff!

Freddy uses his imagination to transform his bedroom into a space station. Can you find clues in the pictures? (Hints: What’s that laser gun? Where does he get a jet pack? Who is that crazy-looking alien?)
Do you love learning about outer space? Be sure to read Captain Freddy’s Space Facts at the end of the story. And click here for EVEN MORE SPACE FACTS.
Captain Freddy has books and websites to recommend—check out the last page of the book! Here are a few to get you started. (* = Freddy’s favorites)

* Little Kids First Big Book of Space, by Catherine D Hughes, National Geographic Children’s Books.
The Magic School Bus Lost in the Solar System, by Joanna Cole, Scholastic 1990
Eyewitness Space Exploration, by Carole Stott, DK Publishing

* About Outer Space


A boy anxious about his first day of school settles his nerves with some pretend play. Freddy is obviously mad about space—his room is blue and decorated with stars and constellations, and a planet mobile hangs above the outer-space quilt on his bed. But he may not be quite ready for school yet: "School is big. It's far, far away. And it's full of strangers." The boy alternately imagines working in space and getting ready for school—his backpack is his jetpack, his shirt is his uniform, his new shoes are moon boots, and that laser he straps on? It looks suspiciously like a banana. But a sudden problem with the ship leaves Freddy floating in space alone, until he lands on a faraway planet and meets an extraterrestrial who tries to take his laser. But then Mom opens the door to find Freddy and his baby sister on the floor playing. Freddy's finally ready, though: "School's a big place….But I've been to space, and it is gigantic."
Reflecting the space theme, Chou's digital illustrations employ lots of deep blue, pops of bright color, and angular lines…a great choice for space fans and a good way to introduce kids to distraction as a coping technique.
— Kirkus Reviews


Uneasy about starting school, a boy named Freddy constructs an interstellar fantasy to boost his confidence. His new school shoes become “moon boots,” and his backpack is actually a jet pack, which comes in handy after Freddy needs to make a quick escape from his rocket. Working in digital media, Chou (the B. Bear and Lolly series) uses saturated colors and geometric shapes to create a retro atmosphere that evokes atomic-age fascinations with extraterrestrial exploration. Shreeve (Oliver at the Window) believably builds Freddy’s self-assurance as the story progresses.
— Publishers Weekly


Five…four…three…two…one…school is a big scary place but it’s no match for a child’s vibrant imagination! CAPTAIN FREDDY COUNTS DOWN TO SCHOOL by Elizabeth Shreeve and illustrated by Joey Chou is a colorful and spirited tale that launches readers into space alongside Freddy–a young boy hesitant about leaving home for his first day of school.
As his mom calls for him to get ready, Freddy floats through space, explores strange planets, wrestles with aliens, and ultimately learns that school is nothing he can’t handle.
— Children’s Book Council