Friday, February 25, 2011

Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Ugly Truth

I finally got to read the latest in Jeff Kinney's Diary of a Wimpy Kid series and it is definitely one of my favorites. Some people don't enjoy these books but they have worked miracles in my classrooms. They are lower level, but the humor and relatable plots make them favorites of all students, who line up when a new book is released. These books are part of our culture of literacy; a reference to Greg Heffley is one that everyone in the school understands. This feeling of belonging is crucial to students who often feel left out of the "book club".

I particularly liked The Ugly Truth because Greg is experiencing puberty and all its horror/glory. My students will be able to relate to the nervousness of a first boy-girl party, the importance of whose textbook they inherit (getting a cool student's old book authomatically makes you cool, right?), and struggling with the new responsibilities of being an adolescent. I am excited that my developing readers will be able to read about a character that resembles them; it's hard for eighth graders when the books at their reading level are all about fourth graders.

Reading self-esteem aside, Jeff Kinney's writing is so funny and addictive. The Wimpy Kid books make readers happy and belong in every classroom.

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