Jeff Kinney is a godsend for reluctant readers. His Diary of a Wimpy Kid series is my go-to for students who hate reading. Everytime, within only a few pages of Greg Heffley’s “diary” they are laughing and telling their friends what a great book it is. I can’t tell you how many of my students over the past two years list Kinney’s books as their favorites. Jeff Kinney has truly written “gateway books”. My kids start with the middle school adventures of Greg Heffley and then move into other novels, exploring new genres and authors, thanks to Diary of a Wimpy Kid!
Now, Jeff Kinney is looking to do the same for reluctant writers. His latest venture is Diary of a Wimpy Kid Do-It-Yourself Book. Designed just like the other Diary of a Wimpy Kid books, this hardcover (orange!) book includes original art, writing prompts, and do-it-yourself comics. Greg leads the writer/reader through a variety of silly and funny writing ideas. Some of my favorites include rules for your family, the baddest thing you ever did as a little kid, and a few questions from Rowley (Greg’s best friend). The entire book is written in Greg’s authentic middle schooler voice, and the book reads like a conversation. I found myself laughing out loud more than once!
This language arts teacher was even more excited to discover that the second half of the book contains entirely blank pages- to be filled in by the author! And Greg reminds you to keep the completed book in a safe place, because it will be worth a ton of money when you get famous someday! :)
I really enjoyed this book. It is available in the October Scholastic catalog and a few of my students already mentioned they can’t wait to order it. If Jeff can hook kids into reading as well as he hooks them into writing, I will love him even more!
Miscellaneous Thoughts- I love the orange color of the cover! I also love that Amulet printed this as a hardback instead of a paperback. Kids are going to love the idea that their book truly is a Wimpy Kid book and not just a lame knockoff, because it is a real hardcover, too. Small details like that are so important when you are trying to get kids to enjoy writing.