Mr. Terupt is a new fifth grade teacher, and this book is told from the beginning to the end of the school year from the point of view of different students in his class. Jessica is intelligent and verbal, and just moved from California after her parents separated. Peter loves to pull pranks. Anna's best friend is her mother; she doesn't like to talk much in school. Jeffrey is also quiet, and no one seems to know why. Luke is used to getting the best grades, and Lexie is used to getting her way, especially when it comes to her friendship with Danielle.
The second book in this series is Mr. Terupt Falls Again, and the third is Saving Mr. Terupt.
This is a good read, and the different voices and perspectives of the characters are a strength. The book goes a little too far idolizing the teacher as a perfect example of what each student needs, which robs the book of some realism. Jessica's character has insights which are remarkably perceptive and would be highly exceptional for a fifth grader. This book is still valuable to read and discuss, especially if the readers focus on friendships and how perceptions about people can change as you get to know them better. This book has consistently been among the top-voted student books on my website; it has a wide range of appeal. It would also be a useful mentor text for writing activities that experiment with different voices.
Class Structure Recommendation: Read-Aloud, Small Group Book Club, or Independent Reading
The best discussion questions, of course, are generated by and contemplated by readers. These questions are designed to avoid major spoilers about the book, and to provide a starting point for teachers, parents, and student reading groups.
**Questions coming soon**
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