Hooray for Diffendoofer Day!

by Dr. Seuss, Jack Prelutsky, and Lane Smith

If the students of the wonderful Miss Bonkers at at the free-thinking Diffendoofer... read more

If the students of the wonderful Miss Bonkers at at the free-thinking Diffendoofer school do not do well on an upcoming test, they'll have to go to school in Flobbertown, where everyone does everything the same, where even the dogs are scared to bark. Miss Bonkers saves the day with a pep talk: "We've taught you that the earth is round, / That red and white make pink, / And something else that matters more - We've taught you how to think." Dr. Seuss's editor calls the book a "a story in celebration of individuality and creative thinking," something of which many earlier Seuss heroes are also guilty. Does the narrator of the newest madcap Seuss adventure sound like the ones children have enjoyed for more than five decades? Yes, remarkably so -- remarkably because the late Theodor Seuss Geisel (known throughout the world as Dr. Seuss) did not complete this manuscript prior to his death in 1991. Janet Schulman, his editor for 11 years, called upon two of today's published humorists for children, poet Jack Prelutsky and artist Lane Smith, to try to work with Geisel's original ideas and sketches for a book about a teacher named Miss Bonkers. They more than met the challenge. There's even a bonus for observant Seuss readers: cameo appearances by some of the recognizable Seuss characters. The final 13 pages are Schulman's discussion of the story behind the story and contain reproductions of Geisel's notes, representing an unparalled view of Dr. Seuss's creative process. (Age 4 and older)

© Cooperative Children's Book Center, Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison, 1998

show less