Study Guide

Sideways Stories From Wayside School Chapter 15

By Louis Sachar

Chapter 15


  • Deedee's a big fan of recess. She's such a fan, in fact, that she jumps down the stairs ten at a time to get there and ignores the posted signs about not cutting across the grass.
  • (Remember, Wayside isn't like most other schools—so of course all the other kids prefer spelling to recess.)
  • Even though Deedee hurries, she never makes it to recess in time to get a green ball. The green balls are the best playground balls; the red ones are second best.
  • Deedee asks Louis for a green ball, then a red one, but all Louis has left is the yellow ball. "It didn't bounce, and it never went the way it was kicked" (15.11).
  • Deedee complains to Louis about her bad luck in playground balls, and Louis explains that she's always the last one to get there. "But that's because I have to come all the way from the thirtieth story," she says. "How do you expect me to compete with the kids from the first or second?" (15.18). Fair question we think.
  • Deedee abandons the useless yellow ball and plays hopscotch with Jennie and Leslie, which she thinks is "disgusting" (15.22).
  • The next day, Deedee asks if she can go to recess early, but Mrs. Jewls makes her spell Mississippi first. Spelling isn't Deedee's best subject, and so she's late to recess instead. She's left with the yellow ball again, so again she plays hopscotch, which is no better than jump rope.
  • We're asked to guess how Deedee solves this problem, knowing what we know about Wayside School. Which means the solution is probably pretty wacky.
  • Deedee's plan: The next day, she brings "a cream cheese and jelly sandwich, some nuts, and shredded cheese" (15.33) in her lunchbox. Just before recess, she smears the contents of her lunch all over her face. Did you guess that's what she was going to do? We'll admit—this idea was not first on our list (but then again, first on our list was eat all the food).
  • Todd, who's in on the plan, tells Mrs. Jewls that there's a dead rat in the classroom. And just like that, Sammy's story comes back to haunt us again.
  • Mrs. Jewls tells the kids to put the dead rat outside immediately, and they do. Deedee finds herself on the playground before anyone else. She asks Louis for a green ball, but he doesn't answer at first. After she says please, Louis answers, "I don't know how you did it, Deedee, but you're first today" (15.42).
  • Mrs. Jewls finds out that she's been tricked, so of course she sends Todd home early.
  • Deedee plays with her green ball and asks Louis if he likes her. She calls him her best friend. "I always wanted to be best friends with a dead rat" (15.56), Louis says.