Grade 4-6. Gary, a fifth grader, has multiple learning problems. He is nicknamed "spaceman" because he copes with peer taunts and scholastic pressures by emptying his mind and "spacing out." His divorced parents don't think he needs extra help, but the school authorities decide to switch him to a full-time special education classroom. There, in an unconventional teaching environment, he begins to blossom. He makes friends with Jesse, who is always running away, and with Amanda, who is training a puppy to be a guide dog. Through Gary's "newcomer" eyes, readers get an inside view of a special education classroom conducted by a gifted and talented teacher. Mrs. Block pinpoints Gary's learning difficulties and begins to provide ways to help him learn. This novel would make an interesting classroom read-aloud to encourage discussion and promote empathy towards those who have different learning styles.?Janet M. Bair, Trumbull Library, CTCopyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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