The key to eventual success is the classroom post office Sarah Jane establishes. The letters the children write to Mrs. Hartwell are sympathetic ("I figured you might be a little scared, just like me"); informative (..".most kids don't eat cauliflower"); encouraging ("Yesterday was THE BEST "); and apologetic ("I'm sorry about throwing up all over your shoes"). Even the custodian and the principal write to Sarah Jane.
Teachers and children alike will identify with Mrs. Hartwell as she navigates her first year. And many classes will be inspired to write letters about their own experiences.