What happens when a boy awakens suddenly hearing a tremendous crashing noise on the street outside his window? He gets up and kind of floats through an unruly squadron of his own stuff to his window, where he sees the garbage truck momentarily hanging maybe twenty feet above the street. A second later it crashes downward again. The sound shakes the walls of his room!
Jasper watches in astonishment. It isn't until his dog Juno comes flying across the room that he realizes something is very, very wrong. At that moment Jasper notices that everything that can move in his world is bouncing crazily up and down. Shoes, socks, pants, shirts, pencils, pens, video game controllers, everything in his room is like it has a life of its own. And all it wants to do is bounce. Still, at the age of eight, Jasper has been conditioned to know exactly what is expected of him. Doing his best to get through his morning routine (getting dressed, feeding the dog, eating breakfast, etc), he eventually makes his way to school, experimenting with this new form of motion.
At school he encounters a drastically altered set of routines. All of his friends, his teachers, even the principal are bouncing chaotically all over the playground. As the teachers and principal struggle desperately to regain control over their school, abandoning any attempt at a flag salute, Jasper and his friends try to learn how to move more slowly and carefully. Once inside the classroom, they are confronted with a whole new set of problems. How many times will they slam into walls and ceiling before they learn how to bounce more carefully? How on Earth can they get anything done when everything everywhere is bouncing out of control? How can they study when they're trying to survive?
Jasper, his friends, and his classmates do their best to move through their day as they normally would, but there is nothing normal about Rubber Tuesday. In the library they learn about the magic of bouncing books, and the connections between what they read and what they dream. In the cafeteria they are exposed to what could only be called a food war, complete with flying plastic utensils. Their day is continually turned upside down as they attempt to negotiate the office, the playground, and the music room. Outside of the normal routines, their relationships too become deeper and richer.
What happens when a 4th grade class, in its effort to learn about figurative language, works with a local writer to produce a story full of that language? Their seemingly boundless energies, normally confined to a preselected pattern of desks and loosely enforced codes of silence, are encouraged to freely explore the connections between language, movement, and sound. They listen, they imagine, they talk, and they write. Their excitement and energy create a world where nothing stays in one place very long. Slowly, chapter-by-chapter, the story takes shape among them. Their imagined characters, their explorations of sound and language, and their excited descriptions all join together to produce the unfolding adventures of Jasper and his classmates.
Welcome to the wonders and the wildness of Rubber Tuesday .