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27 September 2011

Word After Word After Word

Word After Word After Word by Patricia MacLachlan is a book about a classroom of students and the visiting author who inspires them to write about themselves.  It is a book that I was recommended to read for the Virginia Reader's Choice Committee (and the opinions expressed in this review are solely my own and not that of the Committee).

Here is the summary from Goodreads:

Every school day feels the same for fourth graders Lucy and Henry and Evie and Russell and May. Then Ms. Mirabel comes to their class—bringing magical words and a whole new way of seeing and understanding.
From beloved author Patricia MacLachlan comes an honest, inspiring story about what is real and what is unreal, and about the ways that writing can change our lives and connect us to our own stories—word after word after word. 

I can see where the author was going with this book, a book is a great way to inspire children to write.  However, to me, it fell short.  I can see teachers really enjoying this, either as a read aloud or for use in small group reading instruction, but I can see kids being like "this book is boring" and not caring.

I had a hard time connecting with the characters, mainly because I didn't feel like they were really filled out or explained.  I know its a short book, and has a lofty goal to accomplish, but I've read other books that were just as short, made their point and didn't leave me wondering. 

All in all, this was not the book for me.  I probably won't use it in my classroom, but I'm sure in the right hands, it could be a wonderful teaching tool.

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