Saturday, May 4, 2013


It hardly seems possible, but it's been almost two months since I've blogged about books. First I did the Slice of Life Challenge for 31 days straight in March, then I did a poetry challenge with Mary Lee over at Year of Reading in April. But now I'm back to talking books most days, with a little slicing and MAYBE some poetry thrown in.

My latest read, completed this afternoon when I should have been doing housework, is CLEMENTINE AND THE SPRING TRIP. I love Clementine. I love her spunky, really-did-mean- well attitude (the scene where she tries to help Margaret by cutting her hair in the bathroom at school is one of my all time favorite sure to sell kids on reading scenes). I love that she names her cat Mascara, because she thinks that some of the world's most beautiful words in the world are found in the bathroom. And I love her relationship with Mrs. Rice, the school principal.

In CLEMENTINE AND THE SPRING TRIP, the entire third and fourth grade are headed out on a field trip to the Plimoth Plantation. Clementine is planning to partner with Margaret, because she knows her good friend does not like to touch anything dirty, and she thinks Margaret will need lots of help dealing with place where the houses have dirt floors and the class has to plant in the dirt, but then a new girl, Olive, moves to town. Clementine isn't sure how she feels about having another student with a foodish name, and is even less sure when she discovers that Olive has invented her own language, which Clementine can't quite grasp, but her teacher, Mr. D'Matz, thinks that Clementine and Olive will be perfect field trip partners.

This book has so many really funny parts. The fourth grade has strict rules about lunch items that make noise, "no crunching, no smacking, no snicking…" (snicking is the noise that your tongue makes when it sticks to the roof of your mouth when you eat peanut butter or other sticky items), and Margaret gives third grade Clementine strict instructions about what she can bring in her lunch box. The class ends up on Bus Seven, home of the dreaded "Cloud," a smell so bad that Clementine has to go lay under a tree and smell pine needles when she even thinks about the bus. Clementine falls in love with a chicken and becomes a vegetarian mid-trip. This is a book sure to keep third and fourth graders turning pages.

Another fun read by Sara Pennypacker!


Linda B said...

Love Clementine, Carol. Glad to see about this because our classes do have spring trips-should be a good read for several of the younger classes. Thanks!

Mary Lee said...

Will the new baby come in the NEXT book?!?!?

Tara @ A Teaching Life said...

This sounds charming, Carol. I know what you mean about blogging...I was feeling that fatigue myself.

Carol said...

Mary Lee,
I kept waiting for the baby thing to happen too! I thought it was going to happen for Clementine and Mr. D'Matz on the same day, maybe the day of the field trip. Now I'm thinking the baby will come, and Clementine will become a vegetarian, in the next book.