Nancy Keane's Booktalks -- Quick and Simple

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Spinelli, Jerry.
New York : Joanna Cotler Books, 2002.
IL 3-6, RL 5.2
ISBN 0060004835
(6 booktalks)
Booktalk #1

Donald Zinkoff is a loser but he doesn't know it.  He's the kid who wore a giraffe hat on the first day of first grade and giggles uncontrollably.  He's the kind of kid others will often say is a "geek" or a "dork".  But Donald Zinkoff doesn't car.  When Donald Zinkoff is happy he likes to shout "Yahoo!"  One day, a little girl is missing in a blizzard and Donald gives his all to try and find her.  Is Donald Zinkoff really a loser?  You decide.  Read Loser by Jerry Spinelli.  (New Hampshire Great Stone Face Committee)

Booktalk #2

Meet Donald Zinkoff.  We've all known a kid like him somewhere in our school days.  He's just there.  He's just part of the scenery like the cars parked by the side of the road or the green plastic cans on trash day.  He's not anyone you give much thought to.  Except he seems to be having more fun than you.  He seems to see the world just a bit differently.  Donald doesn't see his shortcomings.  As he grows from 1st grade through middle school, other students do become more aware of Donald's clumsiness, lack of good grades, lack of friends.  By the time he's in 5th grade, the word "loser" is being used when anyone talks about him.  Donald doesn't see it though.  He doesn't see himself as a loser.  Will you?

Booktalk #3

"Yahoo" Zinkoff shouts in laughter ever and ever again while falling out of his seat.  Have you ever thought you haven't fit in with 'the crowd'? The kids all laugh and make up names for you.  As your best friends come and go you never have anyone who cares for you.  Probably not, but for Donald Zinkoff it's a whole other story!  Zinkoff is the only kid who loves school, but how, when his school doesn't love him?  "Just leave Zinkoff and NEVER come back" Many teachers say!  His best friend, Hector Binns, makes a candle out of ear wax and Zinkoff wants just like him.  Why you say, because that's just who he is.  A boy with a mind filled with a million dreams.  Will Zinkoff ever make friends or be the big word around school? Find out and read Loser by Jerry Spinelli!  (Max S., student)

Booktalk #4

The book Loser By: Jerry Spenelli is about a boy who becomes a hero. His name Is Donald Zinkoff and he wants to be like his father the mail man. Donald Zinkoff loves everyone and everything. No one Likes him also they have a special name for him it is loser. When a girl goes missing the adventure starts.
I would recommend this book to 4-7 grades because they would understand the book the most. (Andrew, K-12 student)

Booktalk #5

How it is to be a loser? Loser is a book by the author Jerry, Spinelli. It talks about a boy his name is Donald Zinkoff. Donald Zinkoff is one of the greatest kids, he laughs easily, he likes people, he loves school, he tries to rescue a little girl from the streets. The only problem is, he’s a loser. Even though his classmates from first grade on have considered him a loser, Donald Zinkoff’s who support of his loving family do not allow him to feel that way about himself.
 I hope that you read this book and specialty for the readers those loves to read comics book because loser is a book about comedy and how to be not a loser like Donald who’s always a loser and I will hope that you read this book and enjoy it because it’s an assume book. (Charles H, K-12 student)

Booktalk #6

Imagine being someone that no one likes to be around or hang out with and not even notice that you are different than all of the other kids.
Loser is a book by Jerry Spinelli about a kid named Donald Zinkoff but most people call him by his last name, Zinkoff. Donald is a boy who pretty much lives in his own kind of world and unlike other kids he’s not very good at sports and he likes to go to school except he’s not the most intelligent kid in class. There is also a day that Zinkoff skips school because it is field day and the year before he lost the race for his team and he didn't want to humiliate himself again. This book takes you on a journey through Zinkoff’s childhood and the crazy and weird days that he has. He also overcomes one of his fears, the deep dark cellar in his basement.
I would recommend this book to people who like reading fun books about someone’s life. Also because I think people should be able to read this book and realize that even people that stick out like a fish out of water they can still become somebody.  (Dominic C, K-12 student)

SUBJECTS:     Self-acceptance -- Fiction.
                        Family life -- Fiction.
                        Schools -- Fiction.


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