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“A word of encouragement during a failure is worth more than an hour of praise after success.”
Summary: Mudd and his friends Art and Pie are learning about the dangers to our planet’s environment. They want to help reduce that danger and restore healthy habitats all over the globe. The team came up with some zany and innovative solutions for restoring natural habitat. This is the story of their quest. This is a collection of short stories couched in a theme of ways kids can save the earth.
Type of Reading: independent reading, read aloud book, reluctant reader
Recommended Age: read together: 8 to 12; read yourself:
Interest Level: 8 and up
Reading Level: 5
Age of Child: Reviewed by a student at North Junior High School, St. Cloud, MN, as part of the Use Your ABCs program.
Young Reader Reaction: I liked this book because I thought it was a great way to get kids to think about the environment. I also liked when there was a tougher word in the content and a definition was given. I picked this book because I thought it would be a funny book. On the cover were some pictures of Mudd's ideas and they sounded pretty funny. As I was reading, I found it a pretty funny book; the characters were rather crazy.
Adult Reader Reaction: The author explores the challenges of environmental issues with humor, sensitivity, seriousness, and an extraordinary understanding of the thought processes of adolescents.
Pros: In addition to learning about the environment and habitat, readers will have great fun relating to the characters and some of the wacky solutions they try.
Cons: None. Student reviewer: Some of Mudd's ideas were not made clear and I did not understand what he was trying to do until afterward.
Borrow or Buy: Buy. This is a fun for home reading, and very valuable for the classroom. The lessons are offered in a fun, humorous story ... with events and ideas the kids will remember for a long time. Student reviewer: Borrow. This is a book that would be really good to read with your kids, but it is not one I reccomend for buying. It doesn't have long-term value. It does have good ideas in it, so I think it is worth reading.
Educational Themes: If a visitor entered a classroom where this book was being read and discussed, he/she would hear much laughter and heavy doses of adolescent “gross out” dialect. The author knows her audience and how to keep them focused. The messages will not be lost.
Notes: Flesch Kincaid reading level 5.0. The author donated a copy of this book to the Reading Tub, Inc. This is an unsolicited donation.
Literary Categories: Fiction - short stories, humor, ecology
Date(s) Reviewed: April 2009, November 2009
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