Earlier this year, like the first week of school, our fifth grade language arts teacher had an intriguing book on her desk:The Teacher's Funeral : A Comedy in Three Parts.
I love good historical fiction, and this one was perfect and funny. I really enjoyed reading it and even laughed out loud a few times.
At the beginning of the story, we learn that Russell's teacher has passed away. We learn about Miss Myrt Arbuckle and how she was as a teacher. The students in the community did not like her, and they are hoping the school will close. But things change when a new teacher is hired ~ Tansy, Russell's older sister. Since she has not finished high school, she has to prove herself to the members of the school board to continue to be a teacher. Through many trials and tribulations, she works hard to do her best for the 8 children in the one room schoolhouse and her own brothers.
One of my favorite parts of the book was during the funeral. The preacher's eulogy reminded me of things that we say today about kids. He talked about how children at that time had such an easy life because they didn't have to work as much. So funny how we still say some of those things to our students or other parents. Life was always so much harder "back then".
The book is perfect for teaching about the early 1900's and the dawning of a new age. The first cars had been introduced, and times were beginning to change. I love how Richard Peck describes life at that time, and students will feel that same sense of understanding as they read this book.