Nikki and Deja: Substitute Trouble

Overview

Deja is dismayed to learn that her teacher has had an accident and a substitute will be taking her place. Under the new sub's care, nothing is the same in Room Ten. A few of the class troublemakers plot to take advantage of the clueless teacher, and soon other students join in. Should Nikki and Deja go along with the rest of the kids in tormenting him? Should they help him out by tattling on their classmates? Or is there another way to handle the situation?

      Here is another charming ...

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Nikki and Deja: Substitute Trouble

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Overview

Deja is dismayed to learn that her teacher has had an accident and a substitute will be taking her place. Under the new sub's care, nothing is the same in Room Ten. A few of the class troublemakers plot to take advantage of the clueless teacher, and soon other students join in. Should Nikki and Deja go along with the rest of the kids in tormenting him? Should they help him out by tattling on their classmates? Or is there another way to handle the situation?

      Here is another charming entry in a chapter book series about African American girls praised for its accessibility, authenticity, and humor.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
A Junior Library Guild Selection

"English sympathetically captures Deja and Nikki's uneasiness when their school days go off-kilter, and no solution is in sight. . . . Another slice of elementary-school life in the Nikki and Deja chapter-book series, one of the few to feature African American characters."
Booklist

Children's Literature - Leona Illig
What happens when your favorite elementary school teacher has to take a leave of absence and a substitute teacher shows up? The answer is, trouble of all kinds, as Deja and Nikki soon find out. Some of the kids take advantage of the situation and make fun of the new, inexperienced substitute, and even Deja and Nikki are resentful and unimpressed with his abilities. But when that substitute leaves and is replaced by another, however, the situation is suddenly turned on its head. Mr. Blaggart is no one's fool, and his strict practices suddenly have everyone marching to a different, sadder tune. This is another entry in the "Nikki and Deja" series, which focuses on the lives of children of color. The description of elementary school life is realistic, the dialog is natural, and the events in the lives of Nikki and Deja are believable and authentic. The main ideas—that not everyone can be a good teacher, and that teachers have feelings and lives just like everyone else—are refreshing. The book is told in the present tense, mainly from the point of view of Deja. While some of the earlier books in the series might have suffered somewhat from the constant use of the present tense, in this book it feels natural and helps to move the story along. In addition, although this book is part of a series, readers can enjoy and understand the story without reading the others. It provides a clear-eyed, realistic look at life in an elementary school today, and for that it should be commended. Reviewer: Leona Illig
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780544223882
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
  • Publication date: 7/8/2014
  • Pages: 112
  • Age range: 6 - 9 Years

Meet the Author

Karen English is a Coretta Scott King Honor-Award winning author who lives in Los Angeles, California. Her books about Nikki and Deja have been praised for their accessible writing, authentic characters, and satisfying story lines. Karen is a retired elementary school teacher, and she wrote these stories with her students in mind.

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