School Matters

Almost everyone knows a troublemaker. Usually troublemakers appear in classrooms. Troublemakers play tricks. They give the teacher and others a hard time. They may try to get others in trouble, too.

Nicholas Allen was a known troublemaker. Then fifth grade came along and so did his fifth grade teacher. His days of making trouble ended, or so many people thought. Nobody got away with anything in her class. She loved the dictionary. She loved teaching her students about words and where they came from. Nicholas took advantage of that. His pen was no longer a pen. It was a frindle. Fifth grade would never be the same.

Andrew Clements created the character of Nicholas Allen. Nicholas is the main character in Frindle. Many may call Nicholas a troublemaker, but Andrew Clements sees him differently. He describes him as "very nearly naughty." He says that he is right on the edge. He describes Nicholas as smart and funny with a good heart. Frindle and Andrew Clements have won many awards.

Andrew Clements was born in 1949. He was born in New Jersey. He and his family lived there until Andrew was in sixth grade. Then they moved to Illinois. Reading was important to Andrew's family. They spent summers at a cabin in Maine. There was no phone or television there. There were no computers. During the day, they played outside. The nights were times to read. Andrew is convinced that there is a connection between reading and becoming a writer.

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