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Summer School is the eighth book in The Kids in Ms. Colman's Class series. It focuses on student Audrey Green.

Back Cover Summary[]

It is summer vacation. Stoneybrook Academy is having a day camp. It is not like real school. It is fun, like camp.

Audrey likes summer school, even though she spills and breaks everything. But then Audrey breaks something important. Now summer school is no fun.

Summary[]

Main Plot[]

On the first Saturday after school is out, Audrey and her parents talk about her attending summer school, which she is not excited about. Stoneybrook Academy Day Camp will start the next Monday, and Audrey's parents tell her it will be not be like school but will instead be more fun. Each two-week session has a theme, with the first being Book Camp, and several members of Ms. Colman's class and Mr. Berger's class will attend.

When camp starts, Audrey looks around to see who will be her special camp friend, since her good friend Sara Ford, who she sees often, is not attending summer camp. A girl from Mr. Berger's class who Audrey does not know well, Debbie Dvorak, asks to sit with her, and they stick together for a few days afterwards.

For Book Camp, each camper will choose a book a book to read, and when they finish it, create a project to present on the last day to friends and family members. Audrey chooses Sarah, Plain and Tall and Debbie chooses The Mystery of Lilac Inn.

Audrey tends to be clumsy, and often trips and knocks things over. Audrey spills a can of juice onto the cement next to her, and Debbie helps her clean it up. Audrey is grateful for this help, but when accidents keep happening, Audrey starts to feel Debbie's help becomes too much. For instance, when Audrey knocks over a can of pencils, Debbie offers to tell Ms. Colman that the can is not good, but Audrey feels Debbie is making too big a deal of this incident.

Audrey also thinks that Debbie is way too clingy, and follows her around when she would prefer to interact with the other campers, too. On a Friday field trip to a book printing company, Debbie holds Audrey's hand to pull her back from the printing machines Debbie feels could harm Audrey. When Debbie says that to Audrey, Audrey responds that she is not a baby and Debbie does not have to protect her. Debbie is angry at Audrey, but they make up by Wednesday of the second week.

However, their relationship is tested again when Audrey accidentally falls backward onto Jannie Gilbert's papier-mâché peach that she has spent all week making for her book project presentation. Debbie lies for Audrey when Ms. Colman walks into the room, and tells Ms. Colman that she doesn't know what happened to the peach. Audrey feels terrible, but doesn't know what to do. She tells Debbie later she should not have lied, while Debbie counters that Audrey would have gotten in so much trouble and Jannie would have hated her forever.

On Family Day on the last day of camp, the kids present their book projects. After the last presentation, Audrey tells Ms. Colman the truth, but tries not to tattle on Debbie. Jannie isn't as upset as Audrey thought she'd be. However, when Debbie discovers what happened she is angry with Audrey, since they are now both in trouble and Debbie has to write a paper explaining why lying is wrong. Debbie feels she was just trying to help Audrey as a friend. Debbie tells Audrey she doesn't want to talk to her anymore.

When Audrey talks to Sara after camp, Sara says she is glad Audrey told the truth. Sara also thinks that Debbie just needs a friend, and Audrey and Sara could teach her how to be a real friend. They decide they will ask her to play with them tomorrow, and make a Friends Camp for her.

Secondary Plots[]

Characters In This book[]

Students

Book Presentations

  • Audrey - Sarah, Plain and Tall - showing pictures she drew since the book had no pictures
  • Debbie - The Mystery of Lilac Inn - making a clock out of cardboard with a secret clue inside for people to guess
  • Karen and Nancy - Tutu Much Ballet - acting out a chapter of the book with costumes
  • Hank - Robin Hood and His Merry Men - making a Robin Hood costume with a bow and arrow
  • Jannie - James and the Giant Peach - huge papier-mâché peach
  • Ian - rewrote the ending of his book to be happy, rather than sad
  • Nina Bluesky - performed a song she wrote about her book
  • Michelle Rivers - read a poem

Family

  • Mr. Green
  • Mrs. Green
  • Allen Green (mentioned)

Adults

  • Caroline Jacobs - employee at printing company
  • Susan Perez and Tom Baldwin (camp counselors)
  • Ms. Colman
  • Mr. Berger

Places In This Book[]

Book Camp Schedule[]

  • Monday - good morning songs, Capture the Flag, kickball, library to pick out a book for the book project, reading under the oak tree, water fun
  • Tuesday - camp songs, sports, follow the leader game, reading books under the oak tree, charades
  • Thursday - camp songs, water fun - water balloon war, arts and crafts to work on book projects
  • Friday - field trip to TMJ Repro printing company
  • Second Wednesday - arts and crafts to work on book projects
  • Second Thursday - meeting of campers regarding crushed peach, team games
  • Second Friday (last day of camp) - Family Day in the afternoon - campers present book projects

Audrey's Accidents[]

  • Trips on her high heels and veil and falls onto Frederick, Sara's dog
  • Knocks over a cup of juice onto the cement when standing up
  • Knocks a can of colored pencils on her desk onto the floor
  • Steps on end of garden rake which snaps up and hits her shoulder, then breaks flower pots when it falls back down
  • Steps back, loses balance, and falls backwards on to Jannie's papier-mâché peach
  • Spills orange juice all over her drawings while showing them to Sara

Continuity and Inconsistencies[]

  • This book references Audrey throwing an iceball which accidentally knocked out Ian Johnson's tooth in Snow War, and Audrey letting Bobby's mouse escape in Science Fair, as evidence for Audrey's clumsiness which is a major plot point.

Trivia[]

  • Pop culture and real life references: Scrabble, Cookie, Pictionary, Beauty and the Beast,
  • Karen and Nancy do a project based on the book Tutu Much Ballet by Gabrielle Charbonnet, who is also the ghostwriter of this book.
  • Although camp is held in Ms. Colman's classroom, Hootie the guinea pig is not there, because he is taking turns staying with Audrey's classmates. Audrey's turn is at the end of July.
  • Book Camp lasts for two weeks and starts the Monday after the last day of school. After Book Camp is over, the next two-week session is Theater Camp, with each successive two-week session throughout the summer having a different theme.
  • Allen, Audrey's brother who is in college, is away at a work-study program over the summer and will only be home for one week at the end of August.
  • At the day camp there's 9 kids from Ms. Colman's class and 6 from Mr. Berger’s class.
  • Hootie is taking turns at the students house.
  • Terri and Tammy did not sign up for the next camp session along with Debbie.

Gallery[]

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