Sunday, November 20, 2016

A Whole New Ballgame by Phil Bildner

A Whole New Ballgame by Phil Bildner is a great book. It is nonfiction book that teaches children a lot of different lessons. If you enjoy sports, then this is the book for you. It is about two boys named Rip and Red. They are the boys that are on the front of the cover. Red is the young boy that has red hair, obviously, and Rip is the boy with the brown hair. As you can see from the cover their teacher is the one standing in the background. Mr. Acevedo is the teacher and nothing what they expect him to look like or act like. There fifth grade year will for sure be a year to remember for Rip and Red.

Their teacher is not the kind of teacher you expect to be teaching your child. Mr. Acevedo is a teacher that doesn’t believe in tests or homework. He only enjoys doing projects that are crazy insane. If I was a kid in this classroom I would love Mr. Acevedo for not giving us homework or giving us tests. Rip and Red thought their day would be better, but when they got to basketball they saw that Mr. Acevedo was their new coach. This just became a nightmare for the two boys because now they have him for a teacher and a coach. They are not used to someone that is easy going and someone that changes up their whole routine. Red has autism and needs things to be in a certain order and done the same way and Rip is shy and has a hard time coming out of his comfort zone. Read this book to see if Rip and Red are able to overcome adversity and fight through their challenges that are faced in front of them.

I really enjoyed the art on the cover of this book. It is very vibrant and catches the readers eye. I would recommend this book for a fourth or fifth grade reading level. If I was a teacher of a grade lower than fourth, I would read it to my class as a class book because I think many kids would enjoy it and it teaches many important life long lessons for children.

Erin L

A Whole New Ballgame

A Whole New Ballgame
By: Phil Bildner

     A Whole New Ballgame is a novel about a boy in fifth grade named Rip, and his year and all the changes going on. He was expecting to go into school and have the same teacher that had been there for years, and play on the basketball team with his best friend Red just like they had been planning, but when they showed up for the first day of school, everything was different! There was a new teacher, who was eccentric, to say the least. He changed things up in the classroom, and on the basketball court. Rip and Red were pushed out of their comfort zones. The book focuses on the push away from testing in the classroom and the move into a more non-traditional classroom all while being met with opposition from parents and other administrators. The book also focuses on the reform of the basketball team and how the coach turns a mismatched group who lost every single game into a winning team by the power of a good attitude and perseverance.
     The illustrations in the book clearly indicate what is going on in the plot and are not too frequent that they interrupt the storyline, but they are thoughtfully placed to the point of enhancing the book. I enjoyed them and found them to be pleasant and a good addition. I think that having them in black and white was a good choice because it still left some of the imagery up to the readers imagination.
     I would recommend this book for fifth graders, give or take depending on their reading level, I think they will relate to what is going on in the story because that is the age of the characters and that will make the story more enjoyable. I would recommend this book to others and I enjoyed it.

By: Morgan U.

A Whole New Ballgame By Phil Bildner

This is an overall great book that starts out with the RIP and his best friend Red going to their first day of fifth grade. While this sounds normal, they are in for more changes than they can imagine. The two of them start by noticing that the principal is not out front to greet them as they go into the school the first morning, but that is only the beginning. When they get to classroom 208, Mrs. Hamburger is not there, instead it is a guy who they later discover is Mr. Acevedo. After school, the two head to basketball practice where they expect to see Coach Lebo, but instead they see Mr. Acevedo, and a lot more students than just those in fifth grade at RJE.
The students go on to find that nothing about Mr. Acevedo was what they would have expected. They discovered that they would not only not be doing any test prep, but they also had a huge presentation, where Mr. Acevedo had assigned the partners. RIP got stuck with Avery, a girl with a very bad attitude who was in a wheelchair. It took them a long time to even figure out what they would do for their project, but when they did, and they started working together, things got a lot easier. On the basketball side of things though, nothing seemed to go how they expected it to. They played games against other schools in the area, where they were all better than them. 
Mr. Acevedo also was struggling with some of the parents who did not think he was doing things the way they should be done in the classroom. Without even giving him a chance, they disliked everything he did. The students however, really liked him, even Red who did not do well with people he did not know, but he connected with him very quickly. Red was autistic and did not do well with sitting on the floor, loud noises, a lot of people, or new people. The whole book focuses on the issues that students with autism face, along with teachers who do not do things that people believe to be the norm, and having to work with people you do not like.

I thought it was a great book that does a great job at bringing in the diversity that you could see in a classroom. I believe it would be good for both the students and teachers. It would be good for students about 3rd-5th grade. It is a good book for a read aloud and it teaches a lot of very valuable lessons. I also really enjoyed the illustrations because they helped to paint the picture already being painted in your head by the text and they helped to show what some of the characters looked like.
Brittany H.

Thursday, November 17, 2016

A Whole New Ball Game by. Phil Bildner

A Whole New Ball Game by. Phil Bildner

The cover art displays two of the main characters named Rip and Red (Red is the one with red hair). Both boys are very passionate about the game of basketball. They have been best friends for awhile and are just entering the fifth grade. I really enjoy the colors on the front and the font of the title captures your attention very well. The picture also displays Rip and Red in their classroom with their new teacher in the background named Mr. Acevedo and it is his first year teaching at their school. I recommend this book for fourth grade readers through middle school. 

I really enjoyed reading this book. I enjoyed the sport aspect of it and the lessons in which it teaches kids. It has a great lesson of accepting others and never giving up. I love books with illustrations, it gives you a visual about what the scene may look like. Throughout the book there are a few illustrations that really help the reader capture the setting. I also thought the plot was very well done. It kept the reader wanting to read and in the "game." 

This is a book about two kids who are just starting the fifth grade. But when they first enter the classroom, it is not the teacher they expected. Mr. Acevedo is standing there with tons of piercings and tattoos. One doesn't usually see that in schools. Once the class gets to know him, he really isn't scared at all. He likes to mix things up and do them differently in the classroom, which the kids enjoy. When the school day was over, it was time for try outs for the basketball team. This made Rip and Red very excited. But when they showed up for try outs it wasn't how they normally were. It was both boys and girls and Mr. Acevedo was the coach. After awhile they figured out there was only going to be one team this year, named Clifton United. 

Rip and Red are extremely passionate about the game. But Red has autism, so his mom doesn't allow him to play. One thing Red could do, was shoot a free-throw. He almost never missed. This would come in handy later in the story. Rip has always been there for Red, he helps him a lot in school and helps him calm down when he gets nervous. When Clifton United started their season, it didn't go like any team would want it to go. This made Red very upset; it was hard for him to watch. What do you think will happen? Will Red get to play?

-Marley Griffith 

A whole new ballgame .jpg
A Whole New Ballgame
Written By: Phil Bildner
Illustrated By: Tim Probert

At the beginning of the book the main characters Rip and Red are coming off summer vacation and going into their Fifth grade year. While walking into school the first day side by side, they notice something different. There was no one at the doors greeting them into school, normally these people are the principle and the student coordinator. As they entered their new classroom for the year the teacher they expected to have was nowhere to be seen, however, there was a male teacher standing in attention at the front of the room. Once class had started the male teacher continued to introduce himself. “Hello, I am Mr. Acevedo and I will be your teacher this year.” The students were all confused and filled with many questions in which the teacher told them that he would get back to their questions later. The students were soon to find out that Mr.Acevedo did not believe in anything related to tests, and they found out that they would be completing many projects and reading books. Little did Rip and Red know that they would be assigned different partners on these projects. Rip ended up getting stuck with Avery Goodman who is someone that he did not want to work with. Fifth grade has many things that come along with it and being able to play on a basketball team was one of the many that Rip and Red were ecstatic about. When walking into the gym they noticed the high school coach was not there and Mr.Acevedo was there standing in front of the many students. When tryouts were finished the boys were excited to find out that they had both made the team. However, Red’s mother did not let him participate in the basketball games because he was at risk with being on the Autism Spectrum. Adventure was Mr.Acevedo’s biggest encouragement with the kids on the team and in his classroom, because they had the experience of being with Mr.Acevedo they had tried many new things.

The art throughout the book was something that you would not expect considering it was a chapter book. Even though the illustrations are small they are very well visualized with the story. The illustrations that they have in the book are black and white and not colored but are very well detailed. I really liked the addition of the pictures in the book because it shows a deeper meaning to the story.

I really enjoyed this book as it gave me many ways to connect with the characters, since they were very real. I also really liked the illustrations done throughout the book as I stated before. The author Phil Bildner did an amazing job with the storyline and developing new characters that were considered different.

I would recommend this book to be read to children in 3rd or 4th grade, and then 5th and up could read these themselves. I can see this book being a great way to introduce different personalities and different types of people within the classroom the children might be affiliated in. The experience throughout 5th grade in the book is something that I hope the older children could relate to and compare their times with Rip and Red’s Fifth grade time.

Mackenzie Fisette

A Whole New Ballgame By Phil Bildner

       A Whole New Ballgame written by Phil Bildner is a type of fiction. A Whole New Ballgame fits into this category because the students and events that happen throughout the book were something that the author came up with. A Whole New Ballgame follows two best friends, Rip and Red, as they start their fifth grade career.
       It's the first day of Fifth grade and best friends Rip and Red are walking to school together just like they do everyday. When they get to school nothing was the same as it was last year, neither the principle or the parent coordinator was at the school greeting the students as they walked into school. Then when they walked into the classroom the teacher they were supposed to have was not standing at the front of the classroom but instead it was a random male teacher. When all of the students were seated the male teacher introduced himself. The teacher told the class that his name was Mr. Acevedo and he was going to be their teacher this year. As soon as he said this hands went flying up because everyone had a question about what that meant for them. Mr. Acevedo told the students to put their hands down for now and he would come back to their questions later. Mr. Acevedo was not a normal teacher he didn’t believe in taking test or any type of test prep, instead he wanted the students to complete projects and read books that they want to read. At first the students were excited about the project they were going to do on the “nastiest things they could think of,” until Mr. Acevedo assigned the partners they had to work with and Rip got stuck working with Avery Goodman and he really didn’t want to work with her.
       Rip and Red love basketball, which is why they were so excited that in fifth grade they get to play on an actually team. When they first showed up to practice there were many students and the high school coach wasn’t there but instead it was Mr. Acevedo. Mr. Acevedo told the students that they were going to have try-outs to pick the students that were going to be on the team. Both of the boys were so excited that they made the team together that they came up with a handshake to celebrate. The team practiced everyday and had many games. Red wasn’t allowed to play in basketball games because his mom didn’t want him to with him being on the Autistic Spectrum. The basketball team always played with heart but they seemed  to have a hard time winning games. Mr. Acevedo told the team to play with heart and have fun and it would be worth it in the end even if they don’t win. With Mr. Acevedo’s help Rip, Red, the basketball team, and the rest of the fifth grade class learned and tried things that they weren’t used to and had an adventure while doing it.
       Illustrations are not something that is usually found in a chapter book, but A Whole New Ballgame uses many different illustrations throughout the book. Many of the illustrations are rather small, but there are a few whole page pictures. These pictures are very detailed even though they are black and white. The illustrations do not take away from the story but instead add a deeper level of understanding to what the characters and different events looked like throughout the story. I enjoyed the illustrations in the book and found them to be a great addition to the story.
      I would recommend A Whole New Ballgame to students that are in third grade and up. This book would be great to read as a whole class in third grade so that way you can make sure that each student is understanding what they are reading and can easily ask you questions if they get confused by something in the story. As students get older they can read this book by themselves and still get the same enjoyment out of it. Older students will be able to connect to the book by thinking back to what their fifth grade experience was like. A Whole New Ballgame would be a great book for students in third grade and up.
I found A Whole New Ballgame to be a very good read. I found myself being able to connect to the different characters at many different points of the book. There were many times that I couldn’t put the book down because I wanted and needed to know what was going to happen next in the story. Phil Bildner did a great job at making the characters very believable which helped me stay interested in the book. A Whole New Ballgame was a great book that I could see myself using in my future classroom someday.
Jessica R.

A Whole New Ball Game By Phil Bildner

A Whole New Ball Game By Phil Bildner

Image result for a whole new ballgame by phil bildner summary


Red and Rip, two best friends with very different lives are conflicted with their return to school to find that many changes had taken place due to budget cuts that affected the school. One of the main changes that they encounter is a new teacher by the name of Mr. Acevedo. Mr. Acevedo is not your traditional stereotypical teacher. When students think of a teacher they may think of the nice lady with glasses who dresses well, or the man who never fails to wear a tie to work and to have a pen tucked in this shirt pocket, at least that what I imagine when I think of the classic traditional teacher. Mr. Acevedo is the complete opposite of that, and happens to have many tattoos and piercings; unlike any teacher who has taught at Reece Jones Elementary.

Red happens to be an African American boy who loves playing his favorite sport, basketball. He is known for being a great aspect on his team. Reds best friend, Rip happens to be on the autism spectrum and tends to have certain fixations in his day to day schedule; Rip is also known for sticking to his particular routine, which happens to be a symptom of autism. Both of them are in the fifth grade and are surprised to find out the new teaching style of their teacher Mr. Acevedo. Mr. Acevedo tries to steer away from the traditional lecture and standardized tests that are seen as a norm in schools nowadays. Mr. Acevedo seems to show no fear in taking a new approach. I felt that he was willing to do almost anything for his students and to help them have fun in school and comprehend what they were learning. However, of course there are some concerns with Mr. Acevedo’s new teaching style. I saw Mr. Acevedo as being a teacher that every grade in every school needs. He looked away from the norms and reached his students in a way that other teachers were not. He left an impression, and I felt that he inspired every one of his students. His teachings called for a more supple approach to teaching.

Throughout this book there are many different characteristics and various terms of diversity. Not everyone is the same, and how boring it would be if they were! The incredible book holds a variety of diverse individuals including a girl in a wheel chair, a boy with autism, different races, and certainly different personalities. I thought that the author did a fantastic job interweaving the multicultural aspects that are infolded in our every day school.

I would certainly recommend this book to anyone willing to read it. I believe that both boys and girls will enjoy this amazing story. I feel that this book would be great from grades third and up.  I truly enjoyed reading this book, and I feel that every teacher needs to be exposed to this book and take notes. I would love if we had more teachers like Mr. Acevedo. I was very impressed with this book.