Izzy Barr is the star athlete of the third grade: she hits homeruns on her softball team and is one of the fastest runners in her class. But at home, her half-brother, Dustin, seems to be her father’s favorite athlete—why else would her dad go to all of his games and miss so many of hers? Izzy pretends that she doesn’t care, but as she, her friends Annika Riz and Kelsey Green, and the rest of their class are gearing up for class field day, she can’t help but hope her dad will be there to cheer her on in the big race against her rival, Skipper Tipton. Dad doesn’t make it to field day, but when he realizes how important it is to Izzy, he and all of her friends and family are there to watch her participate in the citywide 10K run.
Ask your child about the “Famous Footsteps” activity that Izzy and her classmates complete in the book. Who would your child choose to feature if they were to do the same project?
Izzy Barr loves to run and really hopes to win a 10K race, as well as some family and friends to cheer her on in the sidelines. This book has a lot of great aspects, like great friends and teachers and learning to work through feelings and emotions. One of my favorite parts of the book was a homework assignment Izzy and her classmates did where they chose someone they look up to and learned about them, and this added some great, inspiring facts throughout the book.
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.