8 Class Pets + 1 Squirrel ÷ 1 Dog = Chaos

by Vivian Vande Velde (2012)

Move over Humphrey, there’s a new class pet in town! Well, actually there are 8 of them. And a squirrel. And a dog. And together they do indeed create chaos. This fast-paced adventure from Vivian Vande Velde is one wild ride that your students are sure to enjoy.

First, they’ll meet Twitch, the schoolyard squirrel, who has friends inside the school, while he is relegated to life outside of the building. Then comes the fateful day when he narrowly escapes the clutches of a diving owl only to be chased by a dog. To his surprise, the school door has been left ajar, and the quick-thinking squirrel runs right into the building. There’s one problem — the dog follows. And this is only the beginning of the chaos as Twitch runs through the school with the dog in hot pursuit.

Inside, Twitch and the dog meet and learn about the various classroom pets who each narrate a portion of the action. Sweetie, the library rat, who is ready to challenge your preconceived notions about her species. Lenore, the bilingual fourth-grade parrot with a penchant for poetry. And Galileo and Newton, the duo of science lab geckos who banter back and forth about science fair topics. And that’s just half the crew! They will guide your students through the story, sharing their unique characteristics and other fun animal facts along the way. Join them and Twitch and that mysterious dog on this fun overnight romp through the school.

There’s nothing like an adventure with eight different perspectives to get your students, parents, and teachers excited to read together. Your readers are sure to pick a favorite animal as the book progresses, and they will love the way the rollicking tale resolves.

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