Close Encounters of the Third-Grade Kind: Thoughts on Teacherhood [NOOK Book]

Overview

A twenty-year veteran of the classroom, elementary school teacher Phillip Done takes readers through a lively and hilarious year in the classroom. Starting with the relative calm before the storm of buying school supplies and posting class lists, he shares the distinct personalities of grades K-4, what he learned from two professional trick or treating 8-year-old boys, the art of learning cursive and letter-writing, how kindergartners try to ...
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Close Encounters of the Third-Grade Kind: Thoughts on Teacherhood

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Overview

A twenty-year veteran of the classroom, elementary school teacher Phillip Done takes readers through a lively and hilarious year in the classroom. Starting with the relative calm before the storm of buying school supplies and posting class lists, he shares the distinct personalities of grades K-4, what he learned from two professional trick or treating 8-year-old boys, the art of learning cursive and letter-writing, how kindergartners try to trap leprechauns, and what every child should experience before he or she grows up.

These charming, sweet, and funny tales of Mr. Done's trials and triumphs as an award-winning schoolteacher will touch readers' hearts and remind them of the true joys of childhood. We all have that one special, favorite grade school teacher whom we fondly remember throughout our adult lives - and every teacher also has students whom they will never forget. This is the perfect book for teachers, parents, and anyone else who is looking for a lighthearted, nostalgic read.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Once again, author and veteran California school teacher Done (32 Third Graders and One Class Bunny) shares his unique, joyful view of childhood with gentle humor and penetrating insight. Going through the school year month by month, Done offers humorous vignettes, student profiles and phenomena unique to the third grade, peppered with memories of Done's own childhood, which only get better as the book goes on. Done's style is straightforward and fast-paced, expertly recreating his adventures as the sole adult in a room of eight-year-olds. Culled from decades of experience, Done's text illuminates the enormous commitment and generous humor needed to get through 25 years of teaching ("After learning their names, I gave them the Keep Your Zippers Up Speech in my best Judge Wapner voice"). Alongside dry wit, Done also delivers heartbreak and wisdom relevant to anyone with memories of a childhood classroom.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
author of 'The First Days of School' Harry K. Wong
"There isn't a story Phillip Done tells that we cannot all relate to that validates our profession. You will laugh yourself silly and concomitantly be proud that you are a teacher. This is a must read book."
author of 'Educating Esme' and 'How to Get Your Esme Raji Codell
"The great strength behind Mr. Done's adventures and his unique storytelling style is that he never just celebrates how great the teacher is--he celebrates how great the children are. Joyful, honest work that will fortify both the veteran and novice educator."
author of "The Read-Aloud Handbook" Jim Trelease
"More important than knowing how the curriculum works or how the testing works, after 25 years in the elementary classroom Phillip Done knows how kids work. Not only will this enlighten beginning teachers, it will open more than a few parents' eyes as well."
author of "The Freedom Writer's Diary" and "Teach Erin Gruwell
"Phillip Done gets it--he gets how kids think, he gets how kids learn, and he gets how to inspire them to do both. His comical, warm, and insightful memoir brings you right into the classroom, following his incredibly colorful class of characters through an entire school year, capturing the magic and wonder of being a kid."
From the Publisher
"The great strength behind Mr. Done's adventures and his unique storytelling style is that he never just celebrates how great the teacher is—he celebrates how great the children are. Joyful, honest work that will fortify both the veteran and novice educator."—Esme Raji Codell, author of 'Educating Esme' and 'How to Get Your Child to Love Reading'

"There isn't a story Phillip Done tells that we cannot all relate to that validates our profession. You will laugh yourself silly and concomitantly be proud that you are a teacher. This is a must read book."—Harry K. Wong, author of 'The First Days of School'

"More important than knowing how the curriculum works or how the testing works, after 25 years in the elementary classroom Phillip Done knows how kids work. Not only will this enlighten beginning teachers, it will open more than a few parents' eyes as well."—Jim Trelease, author of "The Read-Aloud Handbook"

"Phillip Done gets it—he gets how kids think, he gets how kids learn, and he gets how to inspire them to do both. His comical, warm, and insightful memoir brings you right into the classroom, following his incredibly colorful class of characters through an entire school year, capturing the magic and wonder of being a kid."—Erin Gruwell, author of "The Freedom Writer's Diary" and "Teach with Your Heart"

"Done shares his unique, joyful view of childhood with gentle humor and penetrating insight. Going through the school year month by month, Done offers humorous vignettes, student profiles and phenomena unique to the third grade, peppered with memories of Done's own childhood, which only get better as the book goes on. Done's style is straightforward and fast-paced, expertly recreating his adventures....Alongside dry wit, Done also delivers heartbreak and wisdom relevant to anyone with memories of a childhood classroom."—Publishers Weekly

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781599952642
  • Publisher: Center Street
  • Publication date: 9/4/2009
  • Sold by: Hachette Digital, Inc.
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 336
  • Sales rank: 695,044
  • File size: 641 KB

Meet the Author

Phil Done is a 20-year-plus veteran of the California school system and has received the prestigious Charles Schwab Distinguished Teacher Award, was nominated for the Disney Teacher of the Year Award, and has been honored as a Teacher of the Year in California.

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Sort by: Showing 1 – 17 of 14 Customer Reviews
  • Posted September 3, 2012

    This book, along with his first book, sit on my shelf behind my

    This book, along with his first book, sit on my shelf behind my desk in my classroom. The first book was part of the many thing that inspired me to be a teacher as a senior in high school. Both books are very funny, inspiring, and most of all...VERY true! Anyone who is thinking about teaching I recommend this book to.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 23, 2011

    Spot on

    Done speaks what every teacher has felt and thought. His books are entertaining, enlightening, and inspiring. Also recommend 32 third graders and one class bunny.

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  • Posted February 2, 2011

    great buy for teachers!

    This fantastic book is a great read for first year teachers or the veteran teacher! It has humor and great stories. I couldn't put it down. I recommend it!

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  • Posted December 27, 2010

    Just as good as the first

    Done's second book is as good as his first. Had me laughing out loud.

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  • Posted October 5, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Teacherhood

    "A child may forget what you taught but will always remember how you made them feel."

    Close Encounters of the Third-Grade Kind is a book almost anyone can identify with, in fact if you were ever a child you will probably love this book. As a parent it brought me back to a sweeter time when everything was new, Santa Claus was real and hurts could be fixed with a kiss and a band-aid.

    The book is written in chapters following the months of the school calendar. September is for school photos, learning to write cursive and Teaching 101. February is the month that the 100th day of school is celebrated, with Phil coming up with yet one more thing that can be counted up to 100, personally I vote for tootsie rolls. Mr. Done tells us about students that will never be forgotten and volunteer work that many teachers give their time to, be sure to have tissues on hand for these. And honestly do all third graders draw a self portrait and write their family history during the first days of school? I still have those tucked away in the attic somewhere and my kids are in their mid twenties.

    This book should be required reading for teachers. For the lower grades to compare notes and for those in junior high and beyond it makes for a great reminder why one becomes a teacher. Close Encounters of the Third-Grade Kind is page by page memories of crayons, the smell of poster paint and what fun it was to discover life. I'd have to give this book a 5 gold star review.

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  • Posted September 30, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Phillip Done shares the secrets of his classroom - all the craziness, fun and laughs!

    Synopsis:

    An elementary school teacher for over 20 years, Phillip Done takes us through a funny and adventure packed year in the classroom. Beginning with the back-to-school sales and preparations in August and going through each month's lessons and highlights, Phillip Done shares the delights and laughs that have kept him satisfied in his job. He's taken trick-or-treating by students, taught children to trap leprechauns, showed them how to master cursive and compose letters, and taught long division - all the while being a beloved force in the kids' lives.

    Review:

    Even if you think that you're not that fond of kids, this book will make you laugh. It might even encourage you to spend time with your nieces and nephews. If you have kids or love kids, I have no doubt that you'll love this book.

    Phillip Done tells these stories of classroom antics so well, that not only do you feel that you're right there, you wish that you could follow him around. He reminds me of my favorite teachers and why I loved school. But the best part of the book are the children who come alive and the love that they show each other and their teacher. Read about Done's pistol assessments to determine which children to watch out for, how "pillow student" Rebecca was able to catch up with her classmates, how Done handles the tooth fairy and Halloween, and the different reading strategies that children have developed. Then enjoy the deep and uncomplicated laughs that burst out!

    Publisher: Center Street (September 4, 2009), 336 pages.
    Courtesy of the publisher.

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  • Posted September 27, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    A Year in the Life of a Third Grade Teacher

    What can I say about Phillip Done's recounting of his elementary school teaching years except that it was a fun, fulfilling read?

    Mr. Done's writing is what I assume his teaching style to be like - - lighthearted, humorous and entertaining. I was drawn into his book from the first page, partly out of curiosity for the teaching profession and partly due to his "getting to know you" style. I can imagine that reading Mr. Done's book is akin to sitting down with him over dinner and letting him talk about all his third grade adventures.

    He begins with right before school begins, with the summer ending, and each section is a different month of the school year. Everything from Back to School Night, where the seasoned teachers know to hide from the excitable students and their talkative parents, to never letting your profession slip while buying school supplies to the dreaded Picture Day.

    I found myself chuckling with reminders of my own school days - - the plastic combs given out on Picture Day, the show and tell (or what is now called "Sharing"), learning cursive writing, adventurous spelling and those crushes on classmates.

    If you get nothing else out of this book, the memories are worth reading it alone. I dare you to read this book and not remember your own third grade teacher, or the best friend you had, a favorite outfit from that school year or the little boy (or girl) you had a crazy crush on.
    Well done, Mr. Done.

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  • Posted August 27, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    A Great Read! It Will Have You Laughing

    Phillip Done has written a humorous and delightful book about teacherhood: the ups and downs of being a teacher and the spirit of teaching. In Close Encounters of the Third-Grade Kind, he starts off with anecdotes of a teacher's disbelief in seeing early Back-to-School aisle displays, and ends with student departures and goodbyes. Even though the school year is roughly nine months long (like a pregnancy), children and teachers can be silly at any time of the day.

    Done may well have coined the word teacherhood by giving readers the most thorough definition with this entertaining memoir. He shares his love for teaching and his love for children. I enjoyed reading every page. Some stories made me giggle, some teacher tips made me laugh, while certain encounters made me want to shed a few tears.

    A particular chapter entitled Principal made me laugh so much, I thought I would awaken the neighbours. Done recounts a particular day where he replaces the principal and where four boys enter the office to reveal a shocking bathroom tale. The most touching story in my opinion is that of The Angel, where one of his students is diagnosed with leukemia. While reading this book, I can remember the time of pogs, tamagachi, Pokemon Red and Blue, Power Rangers . it brings back memories, but kids will always be kids, even though they're into Hannah Montana and the Jonas Brothers.

    With students of all ages going back to school this September, this book is a must, fitting right in to our daily chaos that has become an inviting routine. Take a glimpse into the world of this particular teacher, Mr. Done. See what he sees and learn what he has learned from none other than his own third grade students. Parents, teachers, and all those who were little students once-upon-a-time will smile and laugh to Close Encounters of the Third-Grade Kind because what Done recounts is astonishingly true.

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    Posted December 31, 2010

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