My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Summary from Goodreads
When the neighborhood rat children meet at the park to play, they attempt a science experiment and disaster ensues.
Rat Tuesday is a different kind of children’s book. It’s not “cutesie” though it is cute. I didn’t really find a moral to the story, though it still teaches. There are aspects of wild imagination intertwined with reality.
On a first read, I was intrigued by the mystery of what these “rats” were up to, but to be honest, when I finished the book I felt like I didn’t really “get” the story. I had to ponder and read a few more times before it started to speak to me; and here is what I heard:
I connected with the curiosity of the kids. I teach 3rd grade and just last week we had a school wide STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) night. STEM is gaining in popularity across the nation as we try to inspire kids to see the fun in these subjects. Rat Tuesday is a book that would go well with this movement to interest children more in exploration and experimentation. Having recently helped 24 eight and nine year olds build engineering prototypes, I could relate to the crazy ideas and varied supplies that these rat children came up with for their experiment. I loved how a variety of ages work together in the scientific and engineering process.
I have to admit, that the whole rat aspect didn’t make sense to me at first, but I came to see how the contrast between the science the children were performing and the fantasy of being rats really encompassed what it means to be a kid. Imagination, creativity, and STEM really go hand in hand and Rat Tuesday highlighted that relationship for me.