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Jamie O'Rourke and the Big Potato by…

Jamie O'Rourke and the Big Potato (edition 1997)

by Tomie dePaola

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7401812,599 (3.5)1
Title:Jamie O'Rourke and the Big Potato
Authors:Tomie dePaola
Info:Putnam Juvenile (1997), Paperback, 32 pages
Collections:Your library

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Jamie O'Rourke and the Big Potato by Tomie dePaola



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This story is cute and entertaining for students, however i do not see much educational value for it other than a tool to practice reading. The main message of the story is pretty unclear, but what i would draw from it is that you should always have faith in those you love. Jamie was the laziest man in Ireland and when his wife got sick and couldn't care for her lazy husband, she had to have faith in him to take care of her. The voice of the author is interesting in this book compared to most because he uses Irish words and language in his dialogue. I think this is good exposure for younger students to see that not all people speak the same way depending on where you live or come from. Also, at the end of the story when Eileen told the villagers to take pieces of Jamie's huge potato, it teaches children the importance of sharing and how neighbors can help each other out. ( )
  mskell2 | Mar 23, 2015 |
Summary: Jamie O?Rourke is the laziest man in all of Ireland, far too lazy to help his wife on their farm. Then, after a chance encounter with a leprechaun, Jamie finds himself growing the biggest potato in the world?
Personal Reaction: Funny book and I enjoyed it.
Classroom Extension: Use during the month of March for St. Patrick's Day and as an example of a folktale from Ireland. ( )
  LorraineAllen | Feb 10, 2015 |
I'm a little torn about this book. I think the story and the accompanying illustrations are great! I think the illustrations are simple, and easily interpreted by all ages. The thing that I don't really care for about the book is the moral. I was waiting for Jamie to realize the error of his lazy ways, but in the end of the book, he ends up being rewarded for being lazy and never earns his lesson. Essentially the big idea of this book is supposed to be that "it's not always best to take the easy way out" but it comes across as "Taking the easy way out still pays off in the long run." ( )
  jknuts1 | Oct 23, 2014 |
There once was a man named Jack O' Rourke who came across a genie. The genie asked what wish he wanted granted. Being the clever guy he was, Jack asked for the biggest potato in the world, this way him and his wife would never go hungry. When the potato reached its full size, it rolled down the hill and blocked the entire street. With no way to move the potato, Jack had all of the townspeople eat the potato. Everyone ate until even the sight of potatoes made them sick. In order to never have Jack plant a potato so big ever again, the towns people gave him lots of food. Jack and his wife lived happily ever after. ( )
  Nicole129672 | Sep 15, 2014 |
I chose to read "Jamie O'Rourke and the Big Potato" because I am a huge fan of Tomie DePaola, having read many of his books as a child. The book features DePaola's classic illustrations, which are very cute, colorful, and simple - his artwork is one of the reasons I loved DePaola's books so much when I was young. However, I really did not care for the story (which I suppose isn't really DePaola's fault as the book is an Irish folk tale)for several reasons. Jamie gets to live happily ever after off of the fruits of his neighbors labors because of a situation that came out of his own laziness. What kind of a message is that to spread to young children? Second of all, the term "potato seeds" kept being used, which is completely inaccurate because potatoes do not grow from seeds but in fact grow from the shoots of other potatoes. Even though most readers probably would not question the potato seeds, it really bothered me and kept me from enjoying the story.
  Lara.Lofdahl | Feb 1, 2014 |
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Jamie O'Rourke was the laziest man in all of Ireland.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0698116038, Paperback)

"Jamie O'Rourke is the laziest man in all of Ireland." So begins well-known children's book author and illustrator Tomie dePaola's retelling of a popular Irish folktale. Jamie is accustomed to his wife doing all the household and garden chores, so when she injures her back, he figures he's sure to starve to death. But as luck would have it, he chances upon a leprechaun. The elfin man offers Jamie the biggest "pratie" in the world in exchange for letting him go.

Feeling self-satisfied, Jamie plants the seed, which soon grows into a potato big enough to be a logistical nightmare for the village. Luckily, his wife comes through for him once again, and everyone ends up happy and full. This is not a redemptive tale--Jamie does not learn to be industrious. It is, however, a lively, simple-yet-outlandish, brightly illustrated story about a man and a potato, with a leprechaun thrown in, for luck. (Ages 4 to 8)

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:03:48 -0400)

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The laziest man in all of Ireland catches a leprechaun, who offers a potato seed instead of a pot of gold for his freedom.

(summary from another edition)

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