Cody Harmon doesn’t love reading, math, spelling, or really any of the subjects that Miss Molina teaches in her third-grade class. But he lives on a farm and he loves animals—he even has nine pets—so when the school holds a pet-show fund-raiser, it should be his time to shine. There’s a ten-dollar entrance fee per pet, though, and Cody can’t pay it for all nine pets. He’d love to take his pig, but what about the others? In the end, Cody figures out a way to lend out his pets so that every person in the class (and every pet) gets to participate in the show.
Families are unique and have different expectations for the books they choose to read. The following is a list of concepts included in this book that some parents may wish to seek out or avoid.
Potty Humor: “Super-duper-pooper Simon” and “if …animals…poop, how much poop is there?”
Note that this list is not exhaustive and there may be concepts in this book that are not included or have been insufficiently or incorrectly detailed here.
Ask your child which pet of Cody’s they would have wanted to borrow for the fundraiser.
Discuss how we can learn from Cody’s example of sharing his pets with his classmates.
Ask why it was hard for Cody to share a pet with his best friend, Simon, and talk about how it’s easier to share when others are respectful of your pets or property.
Claudia has been writing ever since she was six years old, when her mother, who was a teacher, gave her a poetry notebook. Her path to becoming a published author is quite a tale in and of itself! While she was working at a publishing company, she was submitting drafts of her stories to the same company. One day, her boss asked her to read one of her own drafts to get a second opinion. She did so, giving some suggestions to the author, and later incorporated those suggestions to herself in what became her published book, At the Back of the Woods. Claudia was born in New York City and raised in New Jersey, earned degrees from Wellesley College, Princeton University, and University of Maryland, and now lives in Boulder Colorado, where she recently retired from being a professor of philosophy at the University of Colorado to write full time.