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I Yam a Donkey!
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I Yam a Donkey!

3.93  ·  Rating details ·  1,359 ratings  ·  321 reviews
Even frustrated grammarians will giggle at the who’s-on-first routine that begins with a donkey’s excited announcement, “I yam a donkey!” Unfortunately the donkey’s audience happens to be a yam, and one who is particular about sloppy pronunciation and poor grammar. An escalating series of misunderstandings leaves the yam furious and the clueless donkey bewildered by the ya ...more
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published June 16th 2015 by Clarion Books
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Average rating 3.93  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,359 ratings  ·  321 reviews

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Michele Knott
Apr 18, 2015 rated it really liked it
Yes, this book is about bad grammar. But really it's a silly, funny, laugh out loud, amazing read aloud.
And if you channel an Eddie Murphy-as-Donkey accent, it really adds to the fun ;)
Aug 21, 2015 rated it did not like it
Kayla Edwards
Sep 22, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books
I was rolling on the floor. Just had it delivered today and I cannot wait to read this one to my kids at school!
Mar 19, 2019 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Readers Looking for Humorous Picture-Books Addressing Grammar
A yam and a donkey engage in a hilarious exchange in which poor hearing and grammar mistakes lead to misunderstanding. The yam continually tries to correct the donkey's statement, "I yam a donkey," insisting that it should be "I am a donkey," but the donkey, who also struggles with subject-verb agreement, thinks that the yam is claiming to be a donkey himself. The yam's efforts to clarify the situation however, only lead to a sorry end for himself and his fellow vegetables...

Having seen I Yam a
Jun 10, 2020 rated it liked it
Even though I can be a frustrated grammarian
I did giggle at the who's-on-first routine when donkey announced, "I yam a donkey!"


But Yam, who was a yam
Hates sloppy pronunciation and poor grammar
An argument with Donkey only leaves Yam frustrated and bewildered

But in the end, Donkey only had lunch!

3 stars

Happy Reading!
Apr 10, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books
This silly little book is a read-aloud gem. A donkey declares on the cover “I yam a donkey!” But unfortunately, he’s speaking to a yam and a rather persnickety one at that. The yam can’t leave the donkey’s odd grammar alone, and tries to correct him, but that quickly devolves into a “Who’s on first” type of exchange where misunderstandings pile up and the silliness does too. When the yam finally manages to explain that he is not a donkey (as the donkey has been misunderstanding) but actually a y ...more
Jul 20, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
A delightful grammar lesson made even more delightful by the demise of the grammarians at the end. It's true that grammar matters, but maybe not so much when you're about to be eaten. ...more
Oct 16, 2015 rated it really liked it
Cece Bell, you treasure.

All of the sourpusses who don't like this because it "encourages bad grammar" are weird donkeys and will be eaten for lunch.
Dee Dee G
Jun 15, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This book is hilarious! You will either it love it or not.
Sheri South
Nov 18, 2015 rated it it was amazing
As "guest reader" to a second-grade class, I read this book aloud. Considering that we'd just finished reading THE BOOK WITH NO PICTURES, it had a pretty hard act to follow. It says a lot that the kids loved it anyway, and when I asked them which book they liked best, a few were vocal in their preference for TBWNP, but several were solidly on the fence, voting for both titles. The teacher was delighted with my choice, since they had just covered subject-verb agreement the previous week, and this ...more
Sep 28, 2019 rated it liked it
At work, a little boy requested this book. After I found it, he recommended it to me, saying emphatically, "I love this book; it is my favorite. I remember it a lot." He then read it to his younger brother, laughing the whole time. Dear reader, I was SOLD.

This is a really cute, silly book. I don't agree with grammar policing, and some probably see this book encouraging bad grammar, which... misses the point. It's a cautionary tale against grammar policing. Also, I love twisted endings. AND it ma
Amy Holland
Popularity/appeal rating: 5

Quality rating: 4

In a one-sentence nutshell:
I laughed really hard at the ending. That uptight potato sure got his comeuppance! Reminded me a lot of Pardon Me! or This is Not My Hat. It's kind of wonderful when an annoying character gets flat-out eaten. Kind of wish that could happen in real life.
Melissa Neufer
Aug 21, 2015 rated it did not like it
Maybe it's because I'm a grammar nazi that I didn't enjoy this book as much as I could have. It's a cute book to learn about grammar but I found myself cringing every single time the Donkey talked. GAH! And then the vegetables are eaten in the end? And then the ending saying grammar doesn't matter? Could have been better. ...more
May 29, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
This book is going to win all the read-aloud awards.
Even better as a read aloud!
Feb 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children-s-books
My 6 year old LOVES reading this book on her own. The repetition is great for little ones learning to read.
Apr 18, 2017 added it
Shelves: children-s-books
I Yam A Donkey! is a children's book about a Donkey with few correct grammatical skills and a Yam he meets that has perfect grammar. The voices of both characters shine in this text along with its grammar lessons. Both of these essential elements could easily emerge in the classroom after using this text as a hook for a lesson. For a lesson on interdependence, students can use this as a model text for their own small writing assignment. Alternatively to other texts that may have one distinct voi ...more
Nov 25, 2020 rated it really liked it
a teacher recommended this book to me. it is really cute. a yam and a donkey are having a grammar argument about I yam and I am and I is and I are.
Amy Porter
Feb 16, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: kidlit
This is a great childrens book about a Yam teaching a donkey good grammer. The donkey states "i yam a donkey." And the yam tries to explain to him that its "i am" not " i yam." The donkey does not fully understand, and think the Yam is trying to claim hes a donkey as well. This book is very fun and easy for young children to read. The illustrations are funny and colorful. This book is not only intertaining, it can also be considered educational for children about grammer. ( graphic novel) ...more
As a parent with young children or an educator working with elementary students, you develop a particular set of listening and translation skills. When the little gals and guys are first learning to speak, what they say and what they mean are sometimes open to interpretation. More than once I've stood still for a few seconds running a phrase over in my mind trying to match what I've just heard with what I know.

When it finally dawns on me what they are attempting to communicate, I repeat it back
This book is hilarious! It has a good little grammar lesson for the kids, but it also has a good lesson for those that go around correcting others' grammar! I know plenty of people that ought to read this! I can't wait to take this one to school and share with the kids there! ...more
Giovanna Forsyth
Jun 18, 2015 rated it really liked it
Listening to my 7 year old scoff at the grammar of a donkey was pretty priceless. HE read this to me, and he was confused at first about why the syntax seemed all wrong, but then he got into it. This is a fun little book, with a surprise ending that had my son giggling.
Jul 25, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books

4.7 stars

Funny and silly. It could be viewed as a cautionary tale for members of the Grammar Police. It's an argument about grammar between a dopey donkey and a well-meaning but slightly know-it-all yam.
Mar 14, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: picture-books
This book made me giggle. It was a little too forceful on the grammar lesson, especially for a book geared toward younger children, but it was cute and comical. :)
Humorous take on bad grammar from a know it all yam and a clueless donkey.
I will say that I am struggling with how to read this out loud without venturing into stereotypical accent territory.
Michelle Nero
Jul 08, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books
I yam giggling ... Is it strange that I read this in my head with the voice of the donkey from Shrek?
Aug 01, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: picture-books
I was actually starting to hate this book and then it saved itself in the last two pages, which were hilarious.
Emmy Groendyke
Aug 27, 2015 rated it it was ok
The donkey in this book is kind of an ass, you have to treat sweet potatoes (sorry, yams!) with more respect.
Sep 20, 2015 rated it it was amazing
My 4 year old hasn't laughed this hard with a book in a long time! ...more
Oct 18, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I love CeCe Bell...Bee Wigged is one of my favorites...this is hilarious. We've read it 38 times in 3 weeks. ...more
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I'm an author and an illustrator, and sadly not a jazz pianist. I live in an old church in the hills of Virginia with my husband, author Tom Angleberger. I work right next door in a new-ish barn. I've written and illustrated a bunch of books for kids and was lucky enough to get a Geisel Honor for one of 'em. If you want to know more about my hearing loss or my childhood (or both), check out my fir ...more

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