The Humphrey series focuses on Humphrey the hamster, the classroom pet of the students in Room 26.
There are 12 books in the series and they are aimed at children in the age range of six to nine years old that are just starting to tackle their first chapter-based reading books.
There are no pictures in the books as they are novels aimed at young readers.
The Humphrey books are written by Betty B. Birney.
She was an English teacher before she started to work with Disney and she wrote several picture books for Disney while at the company.
As well as the main Humphrey series, she has written several spinoffs in the same universe, including several about Humphrey’s friend, Og the Frog.
Humphrey is a Siberian hamster that is the class pet of Room 26, a classroom in an elementary school.
From the bars of his cage, Humphrey observes the students in the class and quickly learns to read and write and how to solve problems.
Every weekend Humphrey gets to go home with a student and he is able to have many adventures out of his cage thanks to the broken lock on his cage.
The books are all written from Humphrey’s point of view and feature the hamster’s unique perspective of the world.
He gives every student a descriptive nickname and tries his best to help them solve their problems.
To begin with, Humphrey has an antagonistic relationship with the Room 26 teacher, Mrs. Brisbane, and he struggles to make friends with the new class pet, Og the Frog.
Birney uses Humphrey as a way to introduce many important lessons and themes to her young readers.
Friendship is a frequent theme, as is exploration, learning, and imagination.
Each book puts Humphrey in a new situation and sees him resolve a problem while also helping readers understand a new concept.
Humphrey Books In Order
Here are the Humphrey books listed in order.
Humphrey the hamster has a sweet life as a classroom pet.
He learns all about the human world by observing the students and gets to go home with a different child every weekend.
Humphrey is no ordinary hamster. Thanks to a broken lock on his cage, he’s able to get out and go on plenty of adventures as well.
- Cute premise and protagonist
- Relatable for young children
- The lack of pictures might bore some younger readers
There is a new class pet in Room 26. Og the frog is Humphrey’s new neighbor but Og doesn’t seem very interested in making friends with Humphrey.
- Helps children deal with issues related to friendship
- A fun new character added to the story
- Some of the lessons in the book are dealt with in a heavy-handed way
Humphrey is caught outside of his cage and the blame falls on the shoulders of Golden-Miranda, one of Humphrey’s favorite students.
The true culprit is the broken lock on Humphrey’s cage, but Humphrey is only a hamster and can’t explain it.
- Teaches children to speak up to protect their friends
- Good themes of friendship
- Shows that life can be unfair sometimes
Humphrey’s life is full of surprises.
Some of them are great, such as his new hamster ball, but some of them are frightening, such as his run-in with a cat.
- Humorous writing that is great for kids
- Easy for kids to relate to
- The scene with Humphrey and the cat may be distressing to some younger children
Humphrey watches as the students in Room 26 learn about boats and begin to build their own ready for a friendly race.
Seeing all of these boats makes Humphrey dream about life as a pirate.
However, when Humphrey accidentally finds himself lost at sea, he has an adventure that’s almost too much even for Humphrey.
- Great for kids that love boats or pirates
- Exciting story
- Not as good as some previous entries in the series
The school year is about to end but that doesn’t mean that Humphrey’s fun with the students of Room 26 is over!
Humphrey and Og the frog go to summer camp with many of the students from Room 26 and get to experience a whole new world of adventures.
- Interesting change of setting
- Several funny incidents
- Not as much story as in previous books
It’s a new school year and Humphrey is surprised to see a new group of kids in Room 26!
Humphrey has many new friends to learn about but that doesn’t mean his old friends have forgotten about him.
Should Humphrey leave Room 26 and Og the frog to go to a new room with his old friends?
- Introduces kids to the idea of gaining and losing friends
- Brings in a group of new characters
- Some kids might miss the old characters
Humphrey has learned about Sherlock Holmes, so when Mrs.
Brisbane doesn’t come to school one day and is replaced by a substitute teacher, Humphrey decides to investigate.
He gathers clues and follows leads to solve the mysterious disappearance of Room 26’s teacher.
- Introduces kids to mysteries and problem-solving
- Gives more insight into Mrs. Brisbane
- Not as thrilling as some other Humphrey books
It’s winter and the holidays are almost here!
Humphrey gets caught up in the excitement and preparations of the students in Room 26 as they get ready for the Winter Wonderland pageant.
There is so much to do to get ready for the holidays and Humphrey hasn’t even found a present for Og the frog yet.
- A perfect book to read at Christmas and over the winter holidays
- Helps kids to understand the winter holidays
- Also sold as Christmas According to Humphrey so be careful not to buy both
Room 26 is full of secrets and Humphrey is trying to decipher them.
Mrs. Brisbane knows that a student will soon be leaving the class but Humphrey doesn’t know who.
The students begin to study Ancient Egypt and make their own secret codes that Humphrey can’t break.
Helping them out is difficult when there are so many secrets!
- Introduction to Ancient Egypt is interesting
- Teaches kids not to keep secrets
- The students form secret clubs and leave some other students out, which may upset some readers
The students in Room 26 begin thinking about their dream destinations and Humphrey’s imagination starts to run wild when Mrs. Brisbane reads stories of dragons.
With Humphrey’s imagination sparked, he starts thinking of ways to entertain his friends but gets a little carried away at times.
- Helps to promote imagination
- Introduces story writing to kids
- Familiar plot structure and tropes
Family Fun Night is just around the corner and the involvement of the student’s families makes Humphrey wonder about his own.
- Helps children understand family
- Well-written for children
- Less of a plot than in some other books
The Humphrey books are a cute series about a pet hamster in an elementary school.
All of the books are written from the perspective of Humphrey and show the world through his eyes as he observes the students in the classroom.
The lock on Humphrey’s cage is broken and this allows Humphrey to freely roam and have many adventures, such as trying to befriend Og the Frog and sailing away in a little boat.
Humphrey can also read and write and he works hard to solve the problems of his friends in the class.
All of the books are written as novels and don’t have any pictures.
They’re intended to be a young child’s first introduction to chapter-based books and introduce many new vocabulary words.
Each book has themes that are relatable to young children and will help them learn valuable lessons.
There is no questionable content in these books either, making them suitable for children of all ages.
Frequently Asked Questions
Finally, let’s answer a few commonly asked questions about the Humphrey series of books.
Do You Have To Read The Books In Order?
Although it is best to read in order, many of the Humphrey books can be read out of order. They have brief recaps at the start of each book to introduce characters.
What Is The Recommended Reading Age?
The Humphrey books are recommended for children between the ages of six to nine years old. This will depend on your child’s reading level.