Book Review: The Beast in Ms. Rooney’s Room

by stryson

This book is the first in a series, The Kids of the Polk Street School.  It’s here that we first meet Richard Best, aka “Beast,” a young man who’s been held back.  This first book chronicles September of his second try at second grade.  We learn, as the book goes on, that he struggles with reading, which is the primary reason he was held back.  Throughout the book, we follow his struggles to learn to accept his situation, tame his behavior, and strive to win The Banner (an award given to one class each week) for Room 113.

This is a second grade reading level, but I used it in a third grade classroom to teach character development.  At the end of the book, we made a yearbook for the main characters, with each child getting a full-page spread.  There are also many resources available to supplement this book at edhelper.com.

Random House’s page for this book & series is here.

Amazon’s page for this book is here.

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