Patricia Polacco

By: Bailee Middleton

Central Idea Statment

In 1985, at Union City, Michigan Patricia Polacco started writing books because she wanted to teach kids about bullying.

Summary of Research

Patricia Polacco is a great and well know author. She has also had ups and downs like everyone else has. When she was little her parents got divorced and moved in with their parents. She ended up spending a lot of time with her grandparents. She respected and cared deeply about all her family even through tough times. She writes about things her parents or grandparents have told her (like bedtime stories) or about her experiences as she grew up. She has said that some inspiration for her writing is for her writing is from teachers. One of her most popular books called Thank you, Mr. Falker tells about a teacher who helped her learn how to read. One of the biggest challenges Patricia Polacco faced was probably getting bullied. She was always that one person that was a little behind when it came to reading and writing and she never really knew why. It turns out that she has dyslexia, this means that when she reads or writes some letters look flipped, turned, or even just floating around the page. She would get teased and bullied because of her reading disability and how she would read slower than everyone else. She has overcome all of that bullying and teasing and has also won many awards for lots of her books. One award she has got was for the book Mrs. Katz and Tush is the 1992 Boston Area Educators for Social Responsibility Children’s Literature and Social Responsibility Award. She still writes books today and goes around to schools all around the world and talks all about her books and inspiration for writing them.

Summary of Synthesized Information

Theme: The themes in Patricia Polacco’s books are consistent or similar. The theme I find is be kind to others no matter how they look or what disabilities they might have. I think this is the theme because in one book of her’s that I read called Thank You, Mr. Falker it is about Patricia when she was younger and how she was bullied because it was a little harder for her to read. The second reason I think this is the theme is because since Patricia was bullied as a child I know that she probably doesn't encourage bullying and they way she spreads her message is through her books like she did in Thank You, Mr Falker and other books. My final reason I think this is the theme is because that is one subject that she talks about when she goes to schools and talks about all of her books. I think that she wouldn't talk about the subject of bullying if she didn't concern or care about the topic. Those are all the reasons I think the theme is be kind to others no matter how they look or what disabilities they might have.

Tone: Patricia Polacco’s tone in her books are usually happy but sometimes might be a little upsetting. She has a deep connection to all of her books. My first reason as to why I think her tones are mostly happy is because all of her books have happy endings in a realistic way. For example in PINK and SAY, yes they got separated at the end and Pink passed away but just think about how much caring there is if Say kept Pink in his memories and told a story that has been passed down to Patricia Polacco. Another reason why I think her tones could sometimes be upsetting is because in her books there are ups and downs (like all good stories should have) and since she bases her stories off of real experiences it could bring back some sad memories. Then again those sad memories could become happy again since she knows that everything works out fine.My final reason is why would someone write happy books if they are anything but happy! She probably wasn't very sad and then wrote a book about a little boy who is a neighbor of a widowed little old lady who then adopts a kitten. She also wouldn't be angry and then writes. She has a deep connection to all of her books and most of the time I think her feelings towards the text are usually happy and sometimes a little sad a book about her brother and them when they were little kids playing around. Patricia Polacco puts a lot of emotion into her books.

Work Cited

"Author Page." Author Page. Web. 03 Mar. 2015. <>.

"Honors and Awards - An Author Guide for Patricia Polacco." Honors and Awards - An Author Guide for Patricia Polacco. Web. 04 Mar. 2015. <>.


Polacco, Patricia. Mrs. Katz and Tush. New York: Bantam, 1992. Print.

Polacco, Patricia. Pink and Say. New York: Philomel, 1994. Print.

Polacco, Patricia. Thank You, Mr. Falker. New York: Philomel, 1998. Print.

"Patricia Polacco's Biography |" Scholastic Teachers. Web. 02 Mar. 2015. <>.

"Thank You, Mr. Falker." Thank You, Mr. Falker. Web. 04 Mar. 2015. <>.

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