"From this day on and forever, I will never use the word PEN again. Instead, I will use the word FRINDLE." A quirky, imaginative tale about creative thought and the power of words that will soon have readers inventing their own. Nicholas Allen has plenty of ideas. Who can forget the time he turned the classroom into a tropical island, or the times ...
"From this day on and forever, I will never use the word PEN again. Instead, I will use the word FRINDLE." A quirky, imaginative tale about creative thought and the power of words that will soon have readers inventing their own. Nicholas Allen has plenty of ideas. Who can forget the time he turned the classroom into a tropical island, or the times he has fooled the teacher by chirping like a blackbird? But now it looks like his days as a troublemaker are over. Now Nick is in Mrs Granger's class - she who has X-ray vision - and everyone knows that nobody gets away with anything in her classroom. To make matters worse, Mrs Granger is also fanatical about the dictionary - which Nick thinks is so boring. But then inspiration strikes and Nicholas invents his greatest plan yet: to create a new word. From now on, a pen is no longer a pen - it's a frindle. It doesn't take long to catch on and soon the excitement has spread well beyond the school and town...but frindle doesn't belong to Nick anymore, it has a life of it's own, and all Nick can do now, is sit back and watch what happens.
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What happens when an exceptional student meets an exceptional teacher? An exciting journey for both, usually. This is exactly what happens in Frindle, by Andrew Clement. Nick Allen is a very good, if not ambitious, student. Mrs Granger is a no-nonsense veteran teacher whose specialty is the dictionary. Nick's attempts to sidetrack her result in more work for him. He decides to annoy her with a new word for pen, frindle, Soon, everyone is in on the game. Mrs Granger is predictably upset and disciplines anyone using the word. The situation snowballs, but in the end, Nick triumphs. So does Mrs. Granger. Andrew Clements has written an enjoyable book for middle-grade students. His main character, Nick, is alive and plotting in classrooms everywhere. The black and white illustrations by Brian Selznick reinforce his regular guy image. Mrs Granger is also familiar. She represents the strict teacher associated with the more challenging lessons of middle school. Through them, the author presents several themes. The most obvious is the power of words. One boy is able to change the name of an everyday item. The responsibilty and cost of leadership is, also, illustrated. Nick changes from a prankster to a boy who carefully considers the consequences of his actions. He uses his skills for positive change, not just amusement. Finally, a gentle lesson about prejudice is presented. Nick thinks he knows Mrs. Granger.But, he will learn that she was not his opponet; She was his best ally. Frindle is book that will be as eagerly read by students today, as it was when first published in 1996. It stands the test of time as a good story should.
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