Monday, June 02, 2014

Einstein the Class Hamster

Third graders love to laugh. I have learned that over and over again in the classroom.  One of my favorite times to hear laughter is during Reading Workshop. In all the quiet of the workshop, I often hear a chuckle, a laugh or a giggle--someone is reading something hysterical.  This doesn't seem to happen as much in 4th or 5th grade but it happened almost daily this year in 3rd.  These kids who love to laugh also love books that make them laugh. I've noticed recently that some of the "funny" books in the classroom make it around the whole classroom somehow. I notice someone laughing over a funny book and the next thing I know, a child is reading it even if it does not fit their usual taste in books. And then they are passing it along to someone else.  I'm not usually a fan of funny books and I don't often "get" 3rd grade humor.  But I am trying. Last week I purchased Einstein the Class Hamster because it looked like the kind of book 3rd graders would love. I hadn't planned on reading it but I had students in mind who I knew would like it.

Well, the book arrived and I had some time so I sat down and read it. The book is about Einstein, a class hamster, who knows more than the teacher and is desperate to teach others what he knows. He runs a game show from his cage (even though no one really notices).  Within pages, I was laughing out loud. Really, I was laughing out loud at a hamster that runs his own game show. Of course--that's funny, right?  Well, I finished the book and am so glad that I did.  I laughed out loud in many places and couldn't wait to share it with my students. It was a fun read. I all of a sudden understood why these funny books make their rounds in the classroom. A light laugh-out-loud book about something goofy just makes you happy.  And I decided I'd try to read more funny books over the summer--it seems to be my reading gap-one I hadn't realized until I read this book. And since I realized how important funny books are to 3rd graders, I want to have more that I can recommend and talk to kids about. So I've added My Big Fat Zombie Goldfish (and maybe its SEAquel --hah!) and the The 13-Story Treehouse to my "funny books" TBR list.   I am hopeful that there will be a sequel to Einstein, The Class Hamster sometime soon too.....

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous8:00 PM

    That's how I feel about Laurie Keller--especially her new Arnie the Doughnut series for young readers! I bet your third graders would love them. I cannot stop giggling when I read them. :) Hadn't heard about Einstein the Class Hampster but will definitely check it out. Thanks for the great tips, as always!


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