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Ramona Quimby, Age 8 by Beverly Cleary
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Ramona Quimby, Age 8 (1981)

by Beverly Cleary

Other authors: Louis Darling (Illustrator)

Series: Ramona Quimby (6)

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4,028781,268 (3.97)22
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Ramona is starting third grade at a new school where she needs to ride a bus. Her sister is off to junior high, her father is switching part-time jobs and going to school to become a teacher, and her mom is still working full time. Changes everywhere for the Quimby family. Ramona is surprised by her new teacher, Ms. Whaley, who is informal and humorous but stern, but Ramona thinks she likes her. She also has a new nemesis in Davy, who she calls Yard Ape. He is challenging, and Ramona likes challenges.

Not everything is perfect for Ramona. She really can't stand spending her afternoons with Willa Jean. She misses seeing her mom, and is worried about her dad's future. The worst blow, though, comes when she overhears her teacher calling her a nuisance. Ramona is devastated. Her hurt makes it hard for her to forgive her mother for putting a raw egg in her lunch instead of the hard-boiled one she asked for, and the general discontent seems to be contagious, as it spills over her entire family. Beezus and Ramona refuse to eat the tongue their mother prepared, and are required to cook dinner the next day. The dinner works out, and inspires Ramona to confront her teacher, who reveals that she doesn't consider Ramona a nuisance, she just meant that washing egg out of someone's hair is a nuisance. Ramona's world is restored to order; not perfect, but very good.

The Ramona stories are endearing. As Ramona gets older, her preschool antics and pranks are growing out, but her creativity and spunky spirit just grow up. She is more mature, but still so young. Cleary masterfully captures a child's voice: the innocence, the immature thinking, and the surprisingly intuitive perceptions. She also presents a happy family that is flawed but good, and the reader can relate to them because they are so real. Ramona's reaction to being sick, for example, or the gloomy Sunday when everyone is in a grumbly mood - these anecdotes are very accessible to young readers who have likely experienced similar situations themselves. This book is a fast read, like the others in the Ramona series, and the humor turns everyday experiences into adventures. Reading about Ramona is a wonderful experience for people of all ages. ( )
  nmhale | Aug 27, 2014 |
Summary of book: Ramona is an 8 year old third grader in your typical family. She has an older sister names Beezus, a mom, a dad and a cat named picky-picky. This book invites us in to Ramona's first day of third grade, her life at home and most importantly, the way she interacts with her family. All children on some level can relate to any one of Ramona's stories- we see her sad, happy, angry, excited- and everything in between. This book is easy for children to read and has the added bonus of being a chapter book. I highly recommend it.

Personal reaction: I have read most of the Ramona books, so re-reading this book was a nice visit down memory lane. My mother read these books to me when I was younger. Every night we would read one chapter and sometimes if we started early enough- we could read two. I liked Ramona because she was fun to read about. She was very opinionated and so was I. I remember reading it and thinking that there were other kids just like me out there too.

Extension Ideas:
1. I would have the children draw me a picture of their family- to include pets and have them tell me what the difference and similarities are between their family and Ramona's family.
2. I would do the blue oatmeal and larvae experiment that Ramona's class does to let the students see the life process of fruit flies. ( )
  Gizellecardiel | Jul 18, 2014 |
Ramona goes through many trials, she is at a new school, with a new teacher, and things at home are changing for her as well. Her father returns to school and her mother starts a job. All the while Ramona is her usual spunky self and we learn a lot about life through her experiences.
  gfurth | Jun 11, 2014 |
Romona is in 3rd grade and because of the switch in the neighborhood, she gets to be the oldest in her school. Romona deals with normal childhood sensitivities, such as getting sick at school, getting along with classmates and finding herself in embarrassing moments. However as the story progresses, Romona makes new friends such as Yard Ape (who she didn't like in the beginning) and Willy Jean.
  Shoshanabrmsn | Jun 9, 2014 |
This was a very nostalgic re-read. Some of the details are a little dated, such as Ramona playing with the buttons on a cigarette machine at the Whopperburger, but the basic story is still good. Ramona's problems seem trivial to adults, but Cleary reminds the reader that those problems seem huge when you're a kid. ( )
  dyeabolical | Jul 4, 2013 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Beverly Clearyprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Darling, LouisIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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Ramona Quimby hoped her parents would forget to give her a little talking-to.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0380709562, Paperback)

From the first day of third grade, when Ramona Quimby meets her eventual nemesis Yard Ape, life moves on at its usual wild pace--usual for the boisterous Ramona, that is. Soon she is accidentally squashing a raw egg into her hair at the school cafeteria, being forced to play Uncle Rat with her annoying young neighbor, and, worst of all, throwing up in her classroom. The responsibilities of an 8-year-old are sometimes daunting, especially in a family that is trying to squeak by while the father goes back to school. But Ramona is full of too much vim and vigor to ever be down for long.

In her second Newbery Honor Book about Ramona (the first was Ramona and Her Father), Beverly Cleary presents another slice of the Quimby family life. Author of more than two dozen children's books, Cleary has a true knack for understanding the tangle of thoughts and emotions in a child's mind and heart. Empathic, witty, and astute, she has earned many other awards, including the Newbery Medal for Dear Mr. Henshaw. Alan Tiegreen's clever line drawings have charmed countless readers of Cleary's books over the years, and his style is now inextricably tied to hers. (Ages 8 to 12) --Emilie Coulter

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:51:31 -0400)

(see all 7 descriptions)

The further adventures of the Quimby family as Ramona enters the third grade.

» see all 6 descriptions

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