Math Curse Book Poster Image

Math Curse



Authors show that math doesn't have to be scary.

What parents need to know

Violence & scariness
Not applicable
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this funny book helps lighten math anxiety.

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What's the story?

The exhilarating and lawless world of Jon Scieszka and Lane Smith turns its attention to math anxiety. In short order, they reduce that ancient fear to rubble, allowing readers to see it for the bullying, ridiculous nonsense it is. By extension, the book gives the whole ragged world of dread a salutary thrashing.


Is it any good?


This book's authors give kids an opportunity to deepen their appreciation of a topic by putting it in perspective and context.

Jon Scieszka and Lane Smith are high priests in the Church of Nothing Sacred, and they take to their calling with a vengeance. Here it is math anxiety that gets the chop. Their vehicle for its destruction is a riotous obsessive-compulsive response to the "math is everywhere" blather doled out by teachers without any more imagination. The narrator, with a funkster/hipster edginess, is instantly appealing.

The words detonate like explosions -- "On the planet Tetra, kids have only two fingers on each hand. They count 1, 2, 3, 10" -- and Smith's paintings provide an eerie, wired setting that also contains collage pieces and other elements that could have been plucked from a canvas by Vermeer or Miro. 

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the daylong buffeting of the girl's math curse. Have you ever viewed the world as she does?

Book details

Author:Jon Scieszka
Illustrator:Lane Smith
Book type:Fiction
Publisher:Penguin Group
Publication date:January 1, 1995
Number of pages:32
Publisher's recommended age(s):4 - 7

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Kid, 11 years old April 9, 2008

Cursed good Book

Math Curse is superb funny and can be helpful in Math!!!I love Jons other books too!!


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