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No Talking Paperback – June 23, 2009

4.7 out of 5 stars 195 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Starred Review. Grade 3–6—Dave Packer's fifth-grade classmates are so boisterous and difficult to quiet down that the teachers have dubbed them "The Unshushables." Dave has just read about Mahatma Gandhi and learned that the man practiced silence one day a week to bring order to his mind. Though Dave likes to talk nonstop, he's determined to give the idea a try. An encounter with Lynsey, another chatterbox, sparks the boys and girls into challenging each other to a no-talking contest for 48 hours. They can answer direct questions from adults with three-word sentences but must otherwise remain silent. The teachers are bewildered at the extreme change in the kids until several of them figure out what's going on. Principal Hiatt demands that the quiet students return to their normal behavior. When the children continue with their silent ways, Dave finds himself at the center of the controversy. This is an interesting and thought-provoking book, similar to Clements's Frindle (S & S, 1996). The plot quickly draws readers in and keeps them turning pages. The author includes the viewpoints of both the students and the teachers, and the black-and-white pencil drawings add immediacy to the story. This lively offering would make a great book-group selection or classroom discussion starter.—Elaine Lesh Morgan, Multnomah County Library, Portland, OR
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


"Andrew Clements set the standard for the school story in 1996 with his first novel, Frindle, which went on to sell more than two million copies...No Talking is Clements's best school story since." - The New York Times Book Review

"Readers may be compelled to use their voice to praise Clements's deft handling of an interesting premise." - Publishers Weekly

"A vintage tale from the master of the theme-driven, feel-good school story." - Kirkus Reviews, starred review

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 8 - 12 years
  • Grade Level: 3 - 7
  • Lexile Measure: 820L (What's this?)
  • Paperback: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Atheneum Books for Young Readers; Reprint edition (June 23, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1416909842
  • ISBN-13: 978-1416909842
  • Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.5 x 7.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (195 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #9,724 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By E. R. Bird HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWER on July 22, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Not all Andrew Clements novels are created equal, and that's a fact. I mean, don't get me wrong. This is true of most children's authors. But sometimes I feel that with Clements, he's always readable. Even if you feel that one book of his is better than another, that doesn't mean that kids aren't going to read them all equally like mad. I maintain the paperback fiction portion of the children's room in which I work, so I've seen firsthand the levels of sheer maniacal energy that go into keeping that area stocked. Turn around for two seconds and FOOM! There go all your copies of Frindle, The Landry News, and Lunch Money. And while I've always kind of enjoyed Clements, none of his books really struck me as something I would have liked to have read when I was a kid. Then I picked up "No Talking". Oh brother, oh sister, oh me, oh my. This. Book. Is. Great. Yes, it has a little bit of learning. A teensy bit of a moral stuffed in there. But to me, this is Clements at the top of his game. Tapping into the essential rivalries that exist between boys and girls, this book is just pure fun and that's a fact. A must read for Clements fans and an enjoyable jaunt for the rest of us.

Let me tell you a little something about the fifth-graders of Laketon Elementary. The teachers there call them The Unshushables for a reason. These kids are the loudest group to cross the threshold of Laketon in years. They also happen to be a bit immature in the whole boys and girls area of things.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
In Andrew Clements' latest book, fifth-grader Dave Packer challenges fellow loudmouth Lynsey Burgess to an original boys vs. girls contest. Although this grade level has been dubbed "the Unhushables," by teachers for their constant chatter, all of the fifth graders compete to see which gender can say the least number of words in two days.

The varied reactions of the teachers and principal to the students' silence, as well as the eventual camaraderie that develops between the boys and girls, make this book a truly delightful read. I would strongly recommend this book, as well as any other Andrew Clements title!

As a fourth grade elementary teacher, Andrew Clements is hands down my favorite author! He writes funny and entertaining school stories that kids can connect with. However, his plots are always clever and original, with his well developed characters often stumbling across profound academic and social truths. The perspectives of teachers and other authority figures are presented along with the students' in a respectful, reflective manner. I use Andrew Clements' books extensively in literature circle groups with my students, as his novels provoke a great deal of discussion from my students.
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Format: Hardcover
No Talking is another fun and thought provoking book by Andrew Clements. The story focuses on a notoriously loud and chatty group of fifth graders, led by Dave Packer and Lynsey Burgess. The students' typical boy vs. girl mentality is intensified when an argument between Dave and Lynsey leads to a No Talking contest between the fifth grade boys and girls.

The manner in which the students go about fulfilling the no talking rule and the unexpected reactions they receive from their teachers and principal is what truly makes this book entertaining. Andrew Clements is an excellent author for school-aged children and always provides an interesting twist to the otherwise mundane. While many of us have participated in no talking contests, I promise they have never turned out like this.

As an elementary teacher, I appreciate that Clements includes topics, such as Gandhi, in a way that peaks student interest and encourages children to learn more about the subject. Children will easily identify with the characters and situations presented in No Talking but be warned, things may be a little quieter after they finish reading it.
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Format: Hardcover
No Talking by Andrew Clements is a great book set in fifth grade where the students have challenged each other to a contest...boys versus girls. The rules of the contest are simple but can be very hard to follow. Students may talk at school only when an adult asks them a question, but then they can only answer using three words at a time. Students can not speak at home, on the playground, or in the lunchroom. The students keep track of their words and use the honor system to report them. When the principal demands that the contest must end, the students join together to silently face a new opponent in the competition. Clements does an excellent job of showing the voice of these students through their dialogues with one another. Their personalities shine through the pages.

Teachers will love the ideas and discussions that stem from this book. The book sparks conversations about peaceful ways to settle arguments like Mahatma Gandhi did in India. The teachers in the book complete many activities that allow students to follow the contest rules and still learn. One my favorites includes creating a story as a whole class where all students add to the story using only three words at a time. Students will love completing lessons that follow these from the book. It may even inspire a contest.
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