Gregory K. has too much homework.
Middle school is hard work, and Gregory tries to be a good student. He participates in class, he studies for his tests — he and his friends even help each other with their assignments. But no matter what he does, there’s never enough time to finish all his homework. It just isn’t fair.
So Gregory goes on a total, complete homework strike. No worksheets, no essays, no projects. His friends think he’s crazy. His parents are worried about his grades. And his principal just wants him to stop making trouble. Can Gregory rally his fellow students, make his voice heard, and still pass seventh grade?
Find out in this book for anyone who thinks school is stressful, gets headaches from homework, or just wants to be heard.
Potentially Sensitive Areas: None
Booklist (December 15, 2016 (Online))
Grades 5-8. Taking his American history lessons to heart, a seventh-grader overwhelmed by his workload rebels. Gregory, the hero of The 14 Fibs of Gregory K. (2013), does reasonably well in tests and class participation, but try as he might, he just can’t consistently get his homework done. Worse yet, the effort leaves no time for his main passion, which is writing. When he stops doing homework altogether, his personal protest quickly becomes a public act of civil disobedience that draws challenges, news cameras, and hesitant but growing approval from fellow middle-schoolers. In addition to surrounding Gregory with loyal friends and supportive adults (aside from the school’s straw-man principal, who contributes only bland platitudes and cleverly oblique threats), Pincus methodically puts his protagonist through a series of encounters that highlight nonviolent approaches—particularly the importance of being polite and respectful to all sides. If Gregory’s campaign rolls along a bit too tidily for ready belief, it could nonetheless serve as a useful road map for budding activists.
Kirkus Reviews (October 1, 2016)
In this humorous sequel to The 14 Fibs of Gregory K. (2013), the white seventh-grader realizes that his monstrous amount of homework gobbles all his after-school time, interfering with his writing and the other things he loves to do. Although not the exceptional student that his older brother and younger sister are, Gregory actually likes school and works hard; immediately after school he and three friends have a homework club. But Gregory has no time to write poems for open mic night at the local bookstore or to work on the book he is writing. Other kids are missing out doing what they love: painting or building websites. Gregory decides that action is needed, and, with the encouragement of his history teacher, his research into the issue leads him to a homework strike and a resulting notoriety as other kids join and a media blitz occurs. Gregory stays respectful but firm, learning a lesson in civic involvement, standing up for what one believes in, and negotiating. Each chapter begins with one of Gregory’s poems. Gregory is a resourceful, likable narrator with kind friends and a supportive family. The absence of racial or cultural clues will lead readers to infer that the principal characters are white. Readers will be drawn to the anti-homework cause and, while they may well find the realistic resolution disappointingly tame, will enjoy the high jinks along the way. (Fiction. 9-12)
About the Author
Greg Pincus is a poet, novelist, screenwriter, volunteer elementary school librarian, and social media consultant. He’s also a blogger, writing about children’s literature and poetry at GottaBook and the social web at The Happy Accident. Through the wonders of social media, he’s sold poetry, helped himself land a book deal, ended up in the New York Times, the Washington Post, School Library Journal (multiple times), and many other interesting places… and also made friends and gotten free cookies on more than one occasion!
His website is www.gregpincus.com.
Around the Web
The Homework Strike on Amazon
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The Homework Strike on JLG
The Homework Strike Publisher Page