Whether you’re vying for a spot on Jeopardy, studying for an exam, wanting to impress someone with your trivia smarts, or simply hoping to learn more about sports or geography, My Weird School, Fast Facts Sports/Geography by Dan Gutman is for you!
This two-in-one book features as narrators: Arlo, a.k.a. “Professor AJ, the professor of awesomeness” (4), and Andrea Young, who is in the gifted and talented program at school and is going to Harvard someday (6). Although the two tweens do overuse the word weird, they share with readers many interesting and esoteric facts, such as how the tradition of the seventh inning stretch in baseball was initiated by President William Howard Taft (16), that “Babe Ruth kept cool on really hot days [by putting] a wet cabbage leaf under his cap” (10), and that football would likely not have passing if it weren’t for Teddy Roosevelt (48).
Once readers flip the book upside down, they also learn fast facts about geography, with chapters on Planet Earth; The Continents; Water; Mountains, Deserts, and Forests; The Fifty United States; and Natural Disasters.
Readers learn these facts as Arlo and Andrea alternate in their sharing while trash-talking one another. Arlo also takes a jab at the reader now and again, calling us dumb-heads or telling us to go to Walmart where “they’re having a sale on brains” (15). Their snarkiness keeps the book entertaining while their factoids enlighten us. Andrea sums up the purpose for learning geography: “Knowing about geography helped people . . . to understand their place in the world and who else lived in tha
t world” (14), and Arlo sums up the fascination of sports as the mystery of not knowing the outcome.
- Posted by Donna