Mr.Sunny is Funny

By Dan Gutman
[Image from HarperCollins]


(Book Description)

  • My Weird School Daze #2: Mr. Sunny Is Funny!
  • By Dan Gutman
  • Illustrated by Jim Paillot
  • Published in 2008 by HarperCollins

Mr. Sunny Is Funny is a fiction chapter book that is part of a series. In this book, A.J. and his family rent a beach house for the summer. A big giant beach house with enough room for Andrea Young, the-know-it-all, to move in with her mom! Spending a summer with Andrea is not something A.J. wants to do! Looks like Andrea has a crush on Mr. Sunny, the sandmaster and lifeguard, but does she like A.J. too? How does A.J. make Andrea not like him? From sandmonsters to sharks to sand castle contests, Mr. Sunny is Funny will sure make you laugh!

Task 1

Facts about the Author


[Image from Dan Gutman's official website]

Who is Dan Gutman?
  • We know from the back of the book that Dan Gutman is the author.
  • We also know from the back of the book a few, simple facts about Dan Gutman.

But, how do we find more information about Dan Gutman?
One way is to search the Internet for information about Dan Gutman. You can click on the links that your School Media Specialist found to see what else you can learn about the author.

1. Take a few minutes with your group and visit these websites about Dan Gutman to learn information about him.

2. Please download the note-taking sheet to help organize your group's facts about Dan Gutman. If you copy and paste the facts, please remember to rewrite them in your own words for step three!
  • Once you click the link, please select "Okay" and your organizer will download and then open Microsoft Excel, you will need to click the box under "Author Facts," and type your name and then type each fact separately in the boxes to the right of your name. Print when finished because you will use this for step 3!

3. After organizing and discussing the facts your group learned about Dan Gutman, each member of the group should record the three interesting things they learned about Dan Gutman to share with the other book groups in your class. Use your note-taking sheet as your script! Please record your comment on the Voice Thread below.

Voice Thread

[Image from Dan Gutman's official website]

4. Once all the group's have completed their Voice Threads, make sure to view their pages so you can listen to author information to help prepare you for the Book Battle.

  • Click on the book title on the left and then Voice Thread link on the right to hear what your classmates discovered about their author!

Task 2


1. With your group, brainstorm at least 10 adjectives to describe the book.
  • Here are some questions to think about:
    • What are the first words that come to your mind when you think of A.J. or Mr. Sunny?
    • Was the book funny?
    • Was the book sad?
    • Was the book short or long?
      • For a bonus, try to use words from the Library Center's or your classroom's Word Wall or spelling words!
  • Try to come up with interesting words by using a thesaurus, a dictionary of synonyms (like words) and antonyms (opposites), which we have used in the School Library Media Center.
    • You may use the thesaurus online by visiting the website:
      • Please Click: Thesaurus
        • Remember to select thesaurus before typing in your word and then press go!


2. Now, you are ready to type the words you brainstormed into the Wordle.
  • Please visit the Student Resources Page on Wordle Instructions first.
  • Now, you are ready to create your Wordle so click on the link:
  • Remember after you created your Wordle, you can make the Wordle a unique, creative, creation of your group by changing the color settings, layout (the way it looks) and font.

3. After your Wordle is created, please print the page as we will be hanging up the Wordles on the bulletin board in our School Library Media Center next to a print-out of the book's cover!
  • Make sure to browse, look, at everyone's Wordle in the Center because some of the Book Battle questions may have to do with a Wordle!

Task 3

Create a Trading Card


1. It is time to create a trading card for several of the characters in the book.This will not only help you study for the Book Battle, but be super fun to make!
  • For Mr. Sunny Is Funny, each student will have to make a character trading card. You may choose from the following characters:
    • A.J.
    • Mr. Sunny
    • Andrea
    • Mr. Granite
    • William Shakespeare
      • If you are up for a challenge, select a lesser known character to profile and get the chance to be a real book detective to search for the information about them in the text, chapters.
      • If there are more students in the group than characters, as long as all the characters are taken, two students may do the same character, but each have to produce or make their own trading card!

2. The first thing your group will do is download a graphic organizer to help you brainstorm everything you can about these characters.
  • Characteristics you may want to brainstorm about:
    • Appearance, looks
    • Age or grade
    • Hobbies
    • Family
    • Friends
    • Likes
    • Dislikes
  • Please Click: Graphic Organizer

3. After you fill our your graphic organizer, you will draw a photo of each of the characters on what you think they look like. Don't forget to write the character's name on top of the picture you draw!
  • Paper, pencils and crayons will be on the main worktables.
  • When you are finished with your drawing, please find your School Media Specialist to take pictures of the drawings that you will use to make your trading card with. How neat!

4. Once your photo has been uploaded to the computer, please read the instructions on the Student Resource Page on how to make trading cards.

5. Now you are ready to make your trading card!

6. Once your card is finished and printed, they will be displayed on the bulletin board along with the Wordles.
  • Make sure during your free time or library visits to read the other students' trading cards because you never know where a Book Battle question might come from!

Task 4

ALA Reading Poster

[Image from the American Library Association Store]

Before you click on the Book Battle link to take the quiz on your book to complete your Book Battle Tasks, you have earned your very own ALA Read Poster, just like the ones we have in the library! Now you will get the opportunity to be a Reading Superstar!

1. When your group is ready for this task, please see the School Library Media Specialist and you will have your picture taken with Mr. Sunny Is Funny!

2. Once your pictures are uploaded to the computer, please visit the ALA Poster Instructions section on the Student's Resources Page.

3. After reading the instructions, you may begin creating your poster by clicking on the websites:


Once your poster is printed and handed in, you should:
[Image by Ms. L]

1. Begin to take the quiz for Mr. Sunny Is Funny!

2. Then test your knowledge on the other books you read by taking the quizzes for them too! (Let's refresh your mind for the Book Battle.)

3. When you have finished your quizzes, you may visit the Fun Links page or take a Book Battle Poll!