Operation Frog Effect

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 26 Feb 2019

Member Reviews

This book was actually really, REALLY good! It was wayyy better than I thought it would be. It was sort of a mix of Because of Mr. Terupt and The Perfect Score both by Rob Buyea, which are both really good books I loved! 

I can’t think of anything bad about this book. I really recommend it!!
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This was not what I was expecting at all - in a delightful way.  I was expecting a silly, fluff piece with middle school angst and it did kind of start out that way.  There was a mean girl, broken friendships, silly boys.  But their teacher had a unique way of structuring the classroom and giving assignments.  The book is told mainly through the different students journal entries.  Once they start a social justice unit and the kids studying homelessness decide to experience it firsthand without their parents knowing... that's when things really get good.  Some parents get so upset when they find out that they blame the teacher who is put on leave until an investigation can be made.  So what to the kids do?  They take what she has taught them and seek to make a difference.  Funny and charming...
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This book has a couple of notable strengths. First, the perspective range is limited. While that does mean that the remainder of the class basically disappears from the narrative, it allows the 8 perspective students to develop into complex characters with unique voices. Secondly, there are consequences to their actions. Yes, they are able to make things right for the most part but some things can't be fixed just because they're sorry. Just as there are troubles too big for them to tackle head on. I liked that message, that when you see a problem in the world you start by finding some small way you can help out. Maybe you can't change the whole world but you can make one thing better for a couple of people and that's a start. Now, there are some believably issues but that's not uncommon in middle grade books.
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Scheerger's middle grade story is told through the journal entries of Ms, Graham's students. Students in upper elementary school will immediately recognize the traits of Ms. Graham's students: there is the stuck up bossy girl, the cut up, the quiet one, the nervous one, and more. While the story was cute and each of the students were recognizable, they felt flat, stereotypical, and predictable. That can be a good thing for young readers. They can relate to the students. 

Thank you NetGalley and Penguin Random House for the opportunity to read an advance reader copy.
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I enjoyed the multi-point-of-views format.  The frog was a minor character which surprised me.  I liked the growth of the students and the way they stepped up to solve problems.  Interesting teaching techniques showcased in this novel.
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Have you ever had a teacher that  was completely awesome and made a huge impact on your life? At White Oak Elementary School, Ms. Graham is that teacher and the impact is made on eight very different students. Emily doesn't understand why her two best friends, Aviva and Kayley, won't talk or sit with her on the first day of fifth grade. Kayley actually doesn't like Emily and is extremely stuck up.  Sharon doesn't seem to have a voice because she always seems to get interrupted and corrected when talking. She also describes herself as weird and a loner.  Blake doesn't have many friends and likes to express himself through his drawings. Henry is a big cut-up and wants to be a famous movie writer/director of comedies one day. Kia comes from a big family and the thing he loves to do the most is read. Cecilia has only been at White Oak a year and she misses her Abuelita back in Mexico so much that she writes her letters teaching her English. Lastly, Aviva misses her best friend, Emily, but she has her reasons for dissing her and befriending Kayley. These kids don't always get along but a classroom assignment brings about new friendships and some bitter competition between table groups. However, when one group assignment goes terribly wrong, they all must team together to save themselves and their beloved teacher. Will they be able to come together to save Ms. Graham's job? Will they be able to put their differences aside to get this done? Read this incredible story to find out how this story plays out.

This books is so amazing! It is written from eight different perspectives in letter form, including one in graphic novel form. Ms. Graham is an inspirations teacher and the affect she has on her students makes me want to be a better teacher. Do not miss this story of friendship, coming of age, and how powerful students voices truly can be.
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This book was really heartfelt and real. It is a great middle grade book for dealing with friendships changing and figuring out to treat others better even when you don't want to.
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