Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Surviving Seventh Grade – Glenn K. Currie

Publisher: Snap Screen Press
Pages: 94
Source:  Review copy in exchange for my honest opinion
Genre:  Young Adult Poetry

This book came at just the right time for me.  I am a middle school teacher and we are currently working on poetry.  This book is a sequel to A Boy’s First Diary.
I want to make my opinion of this book clear from the very beginning.  I absolutely love this book!  It is laugh out loud hilarious.  The topics of his poems can be understood by middle school students.  Some of the topics might not be for the sensitive or immature sixth graders.  The poems don’t rhyme which will appeal to students who are trying to learn to write poetry.  They are narratives and read like short stories.

The author writes from the perspective of a teenager.  His principal and teachers have nicknames.  In his poem Pimples, Currie ends  the poem with the following stanza:
“Everything is harder in seventh grade.
You get too many teachers,
A lot of mean kids and too much homework.
And then you get pimples.”

I thought about it and read this one to my sixth graders.  They agreed with the poem and told me that it seemed like once you hit middle school things slid down hill real fast.  I think the author really speaks the language of the middle school student.

The poems are definitely told from a male perspective.  I believe this is one way to get guys to read.  The poems are definitely from a different time period.  In his poem “Talking about Girls”,  he talks about trying to get a date for the dance.  He is referring to a “sock hop”.

For me one of the most hilarious things is when he is talking about a topic, usually “mens truation” and he has asked his dad and others what it is and they don’t tell him and his reply is, I don’t think he knows either”.  He defines parents as getting old and forgetting things when they hit the age of 30.  I can sit back and laugh because I know some of my students  see adults this way.  It is a reminder of the way I used to think about things at that age.  This is definitely a must read book.

For more information about other books the author has written, check out his website:

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