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Punctuation Takes a Vacation

Mr. Wright's class can't believe it. What will it be like without question marks, apostrophes, periods, and commas? Punctuation has never been as entertaining as it is in this wacky picture book.
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K-Gr 3-After days of punctuation instruction, featured in bright paintings, a class takes a rest and so do all the punctuation marks. While clever postcards arrive from quotations and other characters out at Take-a-Break Lake, Mr. Wright's kids are lost without their grammatical guides. More introductory than instructional, this is a fun way to open discussion. Audio version available from Live Oak Media. (c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

This entertaining tale-cum-grammar lesson begins when, after days of teaching about commas, periods and question marks, Mr. Wright suggests to his class, "Let's give punctuation a vacation." While the students run cheering to the playground, the punctuation marks left on the blackboard take his words literally and head off for a holiday. Reed paints with a funky, na f style using zippy oranges, teals, purples and cobalt blues. Facial features as elemental as jack-o-lanterns and bodies as rubbery as Gumby heighten the fun as the quotation marks sunbathe side by side, the apostrophe waterskis and the exclamation point goes tubing. Each of the comical postcards they mail back to the class offers a clue as to its sender: "Do you miss us? How much? Why couldn't we take a vacation sooner? Guess who?" The mayhem left in the vacationers' absence is just as funny. When Mr. Wright begins to read from a book, he observes: "This is weird the punctuation is missing uh oh where could it be yikes." While spinning this amusing tale, Pulver (Mrs. Toggle's Class Picture Day) manages to teach a good deal about punctuation (a list of clearly explained usage rules appears at the end). Little will children realize how much they are learning, between the verbal shenanigans and the eye-popping illustrations. Ages 5-8. (Mar.) Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.

"A straight forward list of punctuation rules rounds out this inventive and entertaining device for getting kids to understand usage, which proves that nothing makes sense without punctuation. Right? Right!"

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