Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Planet Middle School” as Want to Read:
Planet Middle School
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Planet Middle School

3.68 of 5 stars 3.68  ·  rating details  ·  414 ratings  ·  110 reviews
For twelve years, Joylin Johnson's life has been just fine, thank you very much. A game of basketball with the boys-especially her friend Jake-was all it took to put a smile on her face. Baggy jeans, T-shirt, and hair in a ponytail were easy choices. Then suddenly the world seemed to turn upside down, and everything changed at once. Her best girl friend is now flirting wit ...more
Hardcover, 160 pages
Published September 13th 2011 by Bloomsbury USA Childrens
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Planet Middle School, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Planet Middle School

Dork Diaries by Rachel Renée RussellDouble Dork Diaries by Rachel Renée RussellDork Diaries by Rachel Renée RussellTales from a Not-So-Smart Miss Know-It-All by Rachel Renée RussellThe Dork Diaries Collection by Rachel Renée Russell
7th grade
34th out of 131 books — 56 voters
Out of the Dust by Karen HesseLove That Dog by Sharon CreechHate That Cat by Sharon CreechInside Out & Back Again by Thanhha LaiSummerhouse Time by Eileen Spinelli
Best MG Novels in Verse
39th out of 43 books — 18 voters


More lists with this book...

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 782)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
Lisa Campbell
Lisa Campbell
Poetry
Planet Middle School is the story of Joylin, an intrepid sports playing, jean wearing tomboy, told in a series of poems. The poems tell of her relationship with her family, friends and dealing with all the changes that happen to a young girl as she journeys from child to young woman. Joylin’s best friends are Jake and KeeLee, who love her for who she is. Joylin begins to have uncomfortable and surprising feelings for a boy at school, Santiago and she tries to transform herself
...more
Alejandra Garcia
This book was really interesting because it ibcluded the idea of growing up and how it affects not only you but the ones near you. I was able to have a good laugh and also reflect on the idea of acceptance and how at times we are like jake and try to please others before ourselves in order to be accepted and meet their expectations. Its often hard to be the one seeing that happen and how they get carried along into doing things that are not what one is.
Alyssa
Have you ever noticed yourself changing?

This fiction book is about a girl named Joylin who just got to middle school and is experiencing some changes on her body. I kinda like this book because its good but theirs not a lot of detail this book is like a road trip book.**SPOILER ALERT** in the book Joylin likes a boy named Santiago and she tries to change herself to impress him but then her friend gets into a really bad accident and it changes everything.

This book takes place at Joylins middle
...more
Aspen Dye

Planet Middle School is the story of Joylin, an intrepid sports playing, jean wearing tomboy, told in a series of poems. The poems tell of her relationship with her family, friends and dealing with all the changes that happen to a young girl as she journeys from child to young woman. Joylin’s best friends are Jake and KeeLee, who love her for who she is. Joylin begins to have uncomfortable and surprising feelings for a boy at school. Planet middle school was a great book. The characters just pop
...more
Mrbrudney44
Planet Middle School, by Nikki Grimes, offers a fascinating look into the world of a girl who is in middle school. Narrated in the first person and composed of many short poems, this book is an easy read. While the book may be easy to read, the themes explored in the book are topics to which many middle schoolers/pre-teen girls can relate. This books falls into the category of realistic fiction, as the events and emotions highlighted in this book are realistic and could very well happen in real ...more
Alex Baugh
For Joylin Johnson, 12, there is nothing better than a pair of jeans, a t-shirt, a game of one on one with Jake, or hanging out with her best friend KeeLee. It all adds up to a good day for her. Or at least it used to until middle school came along and everything changed.

Joylin is changing - she's growing up and not happy about the changes, inside or outside her body. But she continues to play basketball, making the team at school and garnering all of her basketball loving father's praise. The p
...more
Kendall Rucker
i like how it showed her changing constantly throughout the book. i didn't like the ending because she could have elaborated more.this book talks about how a girl goes through middle school, and how a lot of things change in middle school. she and her best "boy" friend start to get in arguments because joylin develops a crush on another boy named santiago. towards the end, she realizes that she could have got him if she was being herself. in the end her best "boy" friend get hit by a car and is ...more
M.
Joylin is a typical ‘tween caught between being a basketball star and wanting to be admired by Santiago, her first crush. Her body is changing without her permission and her two best friends, Jake and KeeLee, are making googly eyes at each other.

Nikki Grimes has done an excellent job of conveying Joy’s inner turmoil using a very terse style of poetry. These aren’t the deepest thoughts, of course, but demonstrate how a ‘tween’s mind may well skitter all over the place as life changes from childho
...more
Teresa Scherping
Things are changing in Joylin's life. Her best friend KeeLee is spending more of her time talking about boys and hanging out with her choir friends. Joylin's other best friend, Jake, treats her differently when they play basketball together - apologizing for bumping into her instead of playing hard. And suddenly Joylin is desperate to catch the attention of Santiago, a boy in her class she's never noticed before. Joylin puts aside her basketball jerseys in favor of skirts and heels that boys see ...more
BAYA Librarian
This novel in verse was a pleasant surprise. A fast, light read, it is perfect for your reluctant female readers who are not looking for something edgy or complex. Joylin Johnson is a very relatable character who is struggling with the changes to herself and her peer relationships as they enter middle school and puberty. She is a tomboy who loves basketball and doesn’t have time for all that girly nonsense of fashion and make-up. And then she meets Santiago… Grimes poignantly captures that topsy ...more
Angie
Joy is a tomboy who loves playing basketball. She is best friends with KayLee and Jack. Everything is normal and fine until she starts middle school. Suddenly her body is betraying her; she gets boobs and her period. And she starts noticing boys! One boy in particular catches her eye, Santiago. Joy wants him to notice her so she starts changing to catch his attention. She tries makeup and heels and skirts, but nothing seems to make an impression. Jack and KayLee both warn her about changing for ...more
Alanna (The Flashlight Reader)
I don't feel like writing a very long review of this one right now, but I will say that this was a cute read with a good message.

This "story" was written as narrative prose (poetry) so it flew by. I'm not sure it even took me a full hour to read this. If you like rhyming poetry, this is not your book. There are no rhymes here. In fact, these poems read like short paragraphs. I liked it, personally, and I think it would make "poetry" accessible to my students.

Joylin is a major tomboy that loves
...more
Sarah BT
About the Book: Joylin is finding herself at the crossroads of middle school. She's always been content the way she is, playing basketball and enjoying her friend's. But now her best girl friend is flirting with her best guy friend and basketball seems different. Then Joylin notices Santiago and suddenly her clothes aren't right, she wants Santiago to notice her, and Joylin is feeling a bit left out. Why does middle school have to be so confusing?

GreenBeanTeenQueen Says: Planet Middle School is
...more
Katie
Planet Middle School is a novel in verse for middle grade readers. Joylin, our narrator, is 100% tomboy and can beat most of the boys in her class, including her best friend Jake, in a game of basketball.

But when Joylin starts middle school, she starts seeing the boys around her in a whole new way. And now she's wondering if it's time to turn her basketball shoes in for some girly high heels...

Planet Middle School deals with a variety of different stereotypes and gender roles. Although I have a
...more
Melissa Mcavoy
Reviewed from an ARC. Virtually all of us can empathize with twelve year-old Joylin’s sentiments: “I swear, some days I feel like and alien, dropped off on Planet Middle School by mistake. I keep scanning the skies, searching for that spaceship that’s gonna take me home.” In this slight verse novel, award-winning California author, Nikki Grimes, explores Joylin’s struggle to navigate this new, more complicated, an infinitely more embarrassing, world. There is much, in this quick read, that middl ...more
Tami
Planet Middle School is told in free verse. It is narrated in the authentic middle school voice of Joylin. She navigates her feelings about boys, her changing body, her first crush and the dangers of transforming yourself into someone you are not instead of staying true to who you are.

She also struggles in the very real and painful way we all do in adolescence (and at various times throughout our lives) with the idea that everything is changing—out of our control—and we are required to adapt and
...more
Cass
Mar 18, 2013 Cass rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: People that like poetry
I loved this book. Especially how the message came across that people should not change then way they are, despite their outside environments. If she liked the way that she was, then that should not have changed, especially considering that it was only for a guy that she changed for in the first place, not for herself.

I didn't like the father he was too judgmental, especially the way that he acted towards Caden, as if what he was doing was worng or something. He has his own dreams and ambitions
...more
Liza Wiemer
Jan 15, 2012 Liza Wiemer added it
Shelves: arc, bea
PLANET MIDDLE SCHOOL is a free verse novel written from the perspective of Joylin as she copes with her changing body, her changing relationships with friends, and her changing tomboy image. Joylin also talks about her family and how her father seems to be unhappy with her younger brother's drawing skills. He'd prefer his son to be athletic, but try as he may, Joylin's brother wasn't cut out for the basketball court. Ultimately, PLANET MIDDLE SCHOOL is about accepting yourself for who you are an ...more
Kay Mcgriff
I enjoyed this glimpse into Joylin’s life as she navigates the changes that middle school brings. Joylin loves basketball. She could watch and play all day long with the guys, but now things are changing whether she wants them to or not. Her body has a mind of its own as it grows overnight. All of a sudden, she can’t keep the boys out of her mind. She’s even giggling when a certain Santiago comes around. She just might try out some make up and a skirt, too. Things are even changing with her two ...more
Gina Hernandez
This book was one of the first books I read at school this year. I didn't think I'd looks it at first,but I ended up wanting to keep flipping the pages. It was an entertaining book. It shows how she changed and poems with her friends and family. She likes basketball and I think anybody could read this book. Especially if you play ball!
Saleena Davidson
Nikki Grimes does another book in poetry format in Planet Middle School. It's a simple story but aptly done.....Joylin is a jock, and then suddenly puberty hits and not only is she being treated differently, but she WANTS to be different.....if only as it concerns one special boy. This is a quick, fun, realistic book for middle grades
Kailey M.
Planet Middle School was an interesting book. I can kind of relate to it a little bit. It wasn't my favorite book ever but there were parts that I did really enjoy. The topic peaked my interest because I'm in Middle School and twelve years old and also love to play basketball! The main character is named Joy and she seems to have a pretty normal family life. She has always really been a tomboy as I am too at times! I think Joy probably experiences in the book what most 7th graders experience som ...more
Kathy Wawer
Book written in verse. Protagonist loves sports and action and her best friend is a boy. Through a year in Middle School she can sense changes in herself and doesn't know how to react to them. She feels like a stranger in her own body. Quick read, good portrayal of middle school changes.
Laura
I picked this book up on a whim while my class was in the library. I was hoping to find a humor book. Even though the book was not humorous.I found this a worthy book.

It addresses growing up, meeting parental expectations, tomboyishness, and puberty. The poetry makes it a quick, easy, and friendly read.

I'm thinking this would be a good addition to my library.
Laura
I can't get enough books written verse. This was another great one especially for those "Tom Boys", who are starting to change into a more feminine version of their old selves. Joylin has never liked cute clothes or pretty hairstlyes. She is an absolute Tom Boy and wears baggy, comfortable clothes. She plays basketball with the boys and has never had to worry about those akward moments when a boy grazes her chest. But all of a sudden her body starts changing and so does her mind. She's starting ...more
Chalida
Sweet story of a girl, Joylin, going through puberty and not fulfilling gender expectations. Love the cover and Joylin's character. Written in verse, so this would be a good read for a struggling reader as well.
Dan Rogers
Over the past year or two I've become a fan of novels which tell their story in poetic form. I first encountered this in Sharon Creech's two wonderful books "Love That Dog" and "Hate That Cat." Then I read Jacqueline Woodson's "Locomotion". Now, comes Planet Middle School. This book was quite enjoyable and nicely tells the story of a twelve-year old girl who is just coming in to the physical changes which her body is going through as well as the idea that she's beginning to like boys. For a tomb ...more
Meridith Byrne
I mean no disrespect to Judy Blume in what I am about to say. Blume is amazing, and she was one of the first authors who inspired me to write when I was a little girl. Okay - here goes (sorry) - get rid of your old copy of Are You There God, It's Me, Margaret and give an adolescent girl this book, instead. This story, which follows a traditional plot-arc, is told in a series of poems. It beautifully captures what it is like to grow up today. I cried when I read it because of the power of the lan ...more
Rachel Grover
Yep, it was amazing. I love the fact that this novel is written in poem form. A quick read, but its very true to its age group. My students love my copy in my class library.
Heather
THIS REVIEW CONTAINS A SPOILER!!!!

I loathed middle school. High school was OK, but middle school was it's own special brand of hell. I think a lot of people would agree with me. Nikki Grimes manages to capture the confusion and angst that is middle school in this short novel with her extreamly readable poems. There were only two "problems" for me with the book. Problem 1 is that Joy gets it together and gets to know herself much quicker than any middle schooler could ever do in real life. Proble
...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 26 27 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • The Crossover
  • Addie on the Inside (The Misfits, #3)
  • Never Forgotten
  • Hurricane Dancers: The First Caribbean Pirate Shipwreck
  • The Unforgotten Coat
  • Salt: A Story of Friendship in a Time of War
  • Caminar
  • Hugging the Rock
  • Shakespeare Bats Cleanup (Shakespeare Bats Cleanup, #1)
  • Pearl Verses the World
  • Liar, Liar: The Theory, Practice and Destructive Properties of Deception
  • Kaleidoscope Eyes
  • The Dancing Pancake
  • Little Dog, Lost
  • Bluefish
  • BookSpeak!: Poems about Books
  • Looking for Me
  • Poetrees
Bronx Masquerade Words with Wings The Road to Paris Barack Obama: Son of Promise, Child of Hope Dark Sons

Share This Book