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Even the pace of his writing—and the clipped, matter-of-fact sentences that make it easy for young readers to keep up—enhances the absurdity and playfulness of the story. They must be monkeys, the teacher concludes. Allison stood up. My name is Allison. And so is everybody else.
The Crazy, Silly Joy of Wayside School
Elsewhere in the story, a child is told to deliver a note to a mysterious teacher. Since there was no 19th story, there was no Miss Zarves. Zarves later in the book, naming chapter 19 for the mystery teacher—then, after a quick play-on-words, proceeding to chapter These details, and the extent to which Sachar weaves oddities into the very structure of his writing, are delightful. They also come across as a kind of fissure in the fabric of the parallel universe where the story takes place; making the book itself feel like an object that can travel between the world where Sideways Stories is set and our own.
These two realms are otherwise quite different. Not every kid in the class is a special snowflake. Some children are smart, others struggle with math and reading. Some are thin, some are fat. Some are cute, others are mousey. Except by Kathy, who hates everyone—including the reader.
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When I reread the book this week, I remembered for a moment what that felt like. I have to dig deep inside me, and remember how I felt when I was a kid. I have used this book in several different ways in my classroom.
Reading, discussing, and laughing together brings a class together. I can read this at the beginning of the year and still have kids quoting it or bringing up a joke from it at the end of the year. I have yet to find a child who did not thoroughly enjoy this book. I have also used this book as an independent study unit for students. You can also buy all three units together in a discounted bundle! Whatever you do make sure your students have access to these books!
The Crazy, Silly Joy of Wayside School | The Teaching Bank
They are so much fun and really opens up the reading world for those reluctant readers! My goal is to bring together teachers and homeschoolers who teach grades and use novels with their students. Your email address will not be published. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed. I have taught 3rd, 4th, and 6th grades.
Sideways Stories from Wayside School
My goal is to provide lessons and units for K that are practical and ready to teach with minimal prep needed. Email address:.
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