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The Talented Clementine by Sara Pennypacker

The Talented Clementine (original 2007; edition 2008)

by Sara Pennypacker, Marla Frazee (Illustrator)

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8403410,727 (4.32)10
Title:The Talented Clementine
Authors:Sara Pennypacker
Other authors:Marla Frazee (Illustrator)
Info:Hyperion Book CH (2008), Edition: Reprint, Paperback, 160 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:talent show, humor, third grade, family, realistic fiction, teamwork, finding your talents

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The Talented Clementine by Sara Pennypacker (2007)

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In this installment, Clementine tries to get out of participating in the class talent show because she doesn't think she has any talents - none that she can do on stage, anyway. But the fact that she pays attention (just not always to the class lesson) comes in handy and she is able to help make sure the show goes on! I love this kid. ( )
  JennyArch | Sep 28, 2016 |
This one was just a teeny bit sappy & cliched. Still wonderful. Oh I hope there are more and more and somehow the author keeps up the good work. Tell the illustrator that the 2-page spreads in which our little darling communicates with Mrs. Rice (the principal to everyone else, but a favorite counselor/ auntie to C.) are a must for every book in the series. ( )
  Cheryl_in_CC_NV | Jun 6, 2016 |
Narrated by Jessica Almasy. Clementine’s class is holding a talent show fundraiser for the big school trip. Unfortunately, everyone but Clementine seems to have a talent to perform at the “Talentpalooza.” Clementine considers tap-dancing (she opens 24 beer bottles to glue the caps on her tennis shoes for taps), making her little brother laugh, and even claiming the family is moving to Egypt. However, on the night of the show, Clementine proves to be an effective director and stage manager and she gets the applause she seeks when the principal acknowledges her help.
  Salsabrarian | Feb 2, 2016 |
This is a story about a misfit third grader that feels like she has no talent to offer at her school’s talent show. Clementine’s teacher explains that there will be a talent show for the whole school and encourages the children to figure out what talent they will do up on the stage. Immediately Clementine feels uneasy with this and excuses herself to the principal’s office (a place where she is often sent anyway). She does her best to avoid having to find a talent for the show because she is embarrassed to figure out for herself, and for others to know, that she has no talent. Her annoying friend that is a year older than her, and in the fourth grade has so many talents that she is asking Clementine for advice on how to choose just ONE. Clementine asks her dad about what her talent is, and he goes off on a typical dad list of how wonderful and talented she is…without naming any real talents. She finally decides her talent is to making her little brother laugh, but on the evening of the show, when she asks to bring her brother, her father won’t let her because part of the act she came up with involving her brother includes putting a leash on him. So she ends up going no talent to show on stage. She is embarrassed about this when all of a sudden, last minute, the teacher that is supposed to help the principal run the show can’t be there. So the principal, realizing how well Clementine has paid attention in rehearsals and how she has a talent for paying attention to details, pulls her into the director’s chairs with her and relies on Clementine to help run the entire show. So many things are about to go wrong, but Clementine is there to save the show. At the end, Clementine gets her moment on stage when the principal pulls her up there to thank her in front of the entire audience.

The thing that makes this story Clementine herself. She is an endearing character because of her “I’m my own person” attitude. Yet she is also a humble character in a way. She is the kind of kid I wish I was at her age and the kind of kid I would love hanging out with now. She is funny (although I suppose it is in a slightly self-deprecating way) and realistic.

I think this would be a great story to read to third graders as a read aloud or in small groups. I would focus on Clementine’s feelings of inadequacy and embarrassment, two feelings that elementary children often feel and struggle with in life. I would use the chapter where she is comparing herself to her slightly older friend with many talents and what that feels like. We could talk about the difference between how your parents perceive you, how your friends perceive you, and how you perceive yourself. When the book is over, the teacher could make a list of talents that people have that aren’t necessarily talents you can see on a stage. Making your brother laugh when no one else can IS a talent! Paying attention to details so much so that you can run a show IS a talent. And so on. Then the teacher can have students think about what their “true” talents are and possibly even write about them as a follow up to reading this book.
  WeaverJ | Dec 6, 2015 |
In class the teacher announces that the students in the 3rd and 4th grade will be putting on a Talent-palooza. This makes Clementine nervous because she feels as if she has no talent. She doesn’t believe that she can sing, dance or even play an instrument. While, she compares her ability to Margaret’s who has so many talents. At school she gets so worried that she is exhausted when she gets on the bus. The Clementine asked Margaret to teach her one of her talents so that she could have something to perform. As Saturday gets closer, Clementine is franticly looking for any talent to perform. She has the brilliant idea of sending in a substitute performance for her but that wont work. Clementine was helping the people behind the stage before they would perform. Then Clementine had to assist Principle Rice for the whole night because the other teacher had to leave. She would even have to close the curtains on the acts that went over time. She finally got the pride of herself with all the work she was doing that night. She did not perform and act and she was sad that people were not clapping for her. Principle Rice went on the stage and took the microphone to introduce the director of the night, which was Clementine. She ended the night she got to dinner with her parents. Now she knew the good feeling of all of those people clapping for her. The genre of ‪The Talented Clementine‬ is realistic fiction.
  kbuffum13 | Mar 29, 2015 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Pennypacker, Saraprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Frazee, MarlaIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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For Steven Malk and Donna Bray—

my talented agent and editor—

who knew before I did


To my big brother,

Mark Frazee,

who probably thinks

this dedication stuff

is stupid

First words
I have noticed that teachers get exciting confused with boring a lot.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
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Eight-year-old Clementine, convinced that she has no talents, tries to find a way to avoid participating in the class talent show.

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