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Eugene Rybakov
Eugene Rybakov

When I Grow Up by Al Yankovic: A Review and Discussion Guide for Teachers and Parents


When I Grow Up by Al Yankovic: A Book Review




Have you ever wondered what you want to be when you grow up? Have you ever imagined yourself doing all kinds of amazing and crazy things? Have you ever read a book that made you laugh out loud and inspired you to follow your dreams? If you answered yes to any of these questions, then you might want to check out When I Grow Up by Al Yankovic, also known as "Weird Al", the famous parody singer and songwriter. In this article, I will review this book and tell you why I think it is a great read for kids and adults alike.




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Introduction




Who is Al Yankovic?




Al Yankovic is a Grammy-winning musician who is best known for his humorous songs that spoof popular hits. He has been making music since the 1970s and has released over a dozen albums, including Mandatory Fun, which was the first comedy album to top the Billboard charts in 2014. Some of his most famous parodies include "Eat It", "Like a Surgeon", "White & Nerdy", and "Word Crimes". He is also an actor, director, producer, and author who has appeared in movies, TV shows, podcasts, and books.


What is the book about?




When I Grow Up is a children's book that was published in 2011 by HarperCollins. It is Al Yankovic's first book for kids, although he has written two other books for adults: The Authorized Al (1985) and Weird Al: The Book (2012). The book is based on one of his original songs that he wrote when he was 12 years old. It is a funny and whimsical story that follows an eight-year-old boy named Billy as he tells his classmates what he wants to be when he grows up.


Why did I choose this book?




I chose this book because I am a big fan of Al Yankovic's music and humor. I grew up listening to his songs and watching his videos, and I always admired his creativity and talent. I also like books that are fun and inspiring, especially for children who are still exploring their interests and passions. I think this book is a perfect example of how a book can be entertaining and educational at the same time.


Main Body




The plot of the book




The main character: Billy




The book begins with Billy introducing himself to his teacher and classmates on the first day of school. He says that he likes to play video games, watch cartoons, eat pizza, and ride his bike. He also says that he has a lot of ideas about what he wants to be when he grows up, and he proceeds to share them with everyone.


The show-and-tell presentation




Billy's presentation is the main part of the book, and it takes up most of the pages. He tells his class about all the different and unusual careers that he is thinking of pursuing, such as a snail trainer, a gorilla masseuse, a professional pickle inspector, a tarantula shaver, a sumo wrestler, and a pickle inspector. He also explains why he thinks each job is awesome and how he would do it.


The imaginative careers




Billy's careers are not only hilarious, but also imaginative and creative. He shows that he has a lot of knowledge and curiosity about various fields and topics, such as animals, science, art, sports, and history. He also shows that he has a lot of skills and abilities, such as speaking different languages, playing musical instruments, solving math problems, and inventing new things. He demonstrates that he is not afraid to try new things and to challenge himself.


The style of the book




The rhyme and rhythm




The book is written in rhyme, which makes it more fun and catchy to read. The rhyme scheme is mostly AABB, which means that the last words of every two lines rhyme with each other. For example:



I think I might just be a snail trainer


They'd do whatever I desire


Like sit and stay and fetch and roll over


And balance quarters on their shell


Or maybe I'll just teach them how to drool


And then we'd win the Droolympics


And get a shiny medal made of gold


Or something else that's pretty cool


The book also has a rhythm, which means that it has a pattern of stressed and unstressed syllables that create a beat. The rhythm is mostly iambic tetrameter, which means that each line has four pairs of syllables, where the first syllable is unstressed and the second syllable is stressed. For example:



I think I might just be a snail trainer


They'd do whatever I desire


Like sit and stay and fetch and roll over


And balance quarters on their shell


The rhyme and rhythm make the book more enjoyable and memorable to read. They also help to convey the tone and mood of the book, which are playful and cheerful.


The humor and irony




The book is full of humor and irony, which make it more amusing and interesting to read. The humor comes from the contrast between Billy's expectations and reality, such as when he says that he wants to be a chef who makes "gourmet dirt" or a doctor who operates on "teddy bears". The irony comes from the fact that Billy's careers are not realistic or practical, such as when he says that he wants to be an astronaut who goes to "Pluto" or a lawyer who defends "chocolate bunnies". The humor and irony make the book more engaging and appealing to readers of all ages.


The illustrations by Wes Hargis




The book is also enhanced by the illustrations by Wes Hargis, who is an award-winning cartoonist and illustrator. The illustrations are colorful and detailed, and they match the text perfectly. They show Billy's expressions and actions, as well as his classmates' reactions. They also show the scenes and settings of Billy's careers, such as the snail race track, the gorilla spa, the pickle factory, the tarantula salon, the sumo ring, and the courtroom. The illustrations add more life and humor to the book.


The message of the book




The importance of creativity and curiosity




The book conveys a positive message about the importance of creativity and curiosity for children. It shows that children have a lot of potential and possibilities to explore their interests and passions. It encourages children to use their imagination and to think outside the box. It also celebrates children's diversity and individuality.


The value of diversity and tolerance




The book also conveys a positive message about the value of diversity and tolerance for society. It shows that people have different backgrounds, cultures, perspectives, opinions, and preferences. It encourages people to respect and appreciate each other's differences and similarities. It encourages people to be open-minded and empathetic. The power of dreams and aspirations




The book also conveys a positive message about the power of dreams and aspirations for the future. It shows that dreams can motivate and inspire people to work hard and to overcome challenges. It encourages people to pursue their passions and to never give up on their goals. It also reminds people that dreams can change and evolve over time, and that it is okay to have more than one dream.


Conclusion




Summary of the main points




In conclusion, When I Grow Up by Al Yankovic is a wonderful book that combines humor, imagination, and inspiration. It tells the story of Billy, an eight-year-old boy who shares his creative and crazy ideas about what he wants to be when he grows up. It is written in rhyme and rhythm, which make it fun and catchy to read. It is also illustrated by Wes Hargis, who adds more life and humor to the book. The book conveys a positive message about the importance of creativity and curiosity, the value of diversity and tolerance, and the power of dreams and aspirations.


Personal opinion and recommendation




I really enjoyed reading this book because it made me laugh and think. I liked Billy's character because he was adventurous and optimistic. I also liked the way Al Yankovic wrote the book because he used his own experience and talent to create a unique and original story. I would recommend this book to anyone who likes funny and inspiring stories, especially for children who are still discovering their interests and passions.


FAQs Q: Where can I find this book? A: You can find this book online or in your local library or bookstore. You can also download a free PDF version of the book from the Internet Archive . Q: Is this book suitable for all ages? A: Yes, this book is suitable for all ages, although it is mainly aimed at children between 4 and 8 years old. However, adults can also enjoy this book as it has a lot of humor and references that they can relate to. Q: What other books has Al Yankovic written? A: Al Yankovic has written two other books for children: My New Teacher and Me! (2013) and Fractured Fairy Tales (2015). He has also written two books for adults: The Authorized Al (1985) and Weird Al: The Book (2012). Q: How can I learn more about Al Yankovic? A: You can learn more about Al Yankovic by visiting his official website, where you can find his biography, discography, filmography, tour dates, news, and more. You can also follow him on social media platforms such as Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and TikTok. Q: How can I improve my writing skills? A: You can improve your writing skills by reading a lot of books and articles on different topics and genres. You can also practice writing regularly on various platforms such as blogs, forums, journals, or websites. You can also use tools such as Grammarly to check your grammar, spelling, punctuation, vocabulary, tone, and style. 71b2f0854b


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