By Amy Hackworth.
Maybe your child’s school has been in session for several weeks or just a few days. Either way, I’m sure you’ll agree that school provides ample material for great stories. I hope you’ll enjoy six of my favorites!
1) My Kindergarten by Rosemary Wells takes a cute little animal class through the entire kindergarten year. This is a thoughtful, well-planned book to savor with your little one. It’s full of inspiring examples of great teaching, with story-based lessons on music, friendship, seasons, and science. It’s beautifully written, with an overall gentle tone that makes you appreciate the wonder of learning. If you like Rosemary Wells, try Yoko Learns to Read as well.
2) Italian immigrant Josephine practices a new language in class in Josephine Nobisso’s In English, Of Course. The book highlights the challenges of unfamiliar languages in a positive way, and also models great teaching and learning. Josephine is confident and brave, and tone of the book is upbeat. Plus it features a really cool style of illustration.
3) Sunday Chutney, of Aaron Blabey’s, Sunday Chutney, is perpetually the new girl in school because of her dad’s job, but her great imagination and self-confidence get her through. She’s likeable, and very well-rounded—her interests include “drum solos, marine biology, crumpets and worthy causes.”
4) In Back to School Tortoise by Lucy M. George, Tortoise is nervous about going back to school for all the classic reasons—what if the kids don’t like him, or he gets embarrassed, or he doesn’t like lunch? When we find out that Tortoise is the teacher, this cute book with darling animal illustrations becomes even more endearing.
5) A natural architect, Iggy from Iggy Peck, Architect has been building impressive structures his whole life, but second grade teacher Miss Greer has a serious grudge against architecture—until Iggy saves the class when a field trip takes a turn for the worse. The story is told in tight verse that’s also very funny: “She dropped to the ground with a vague groaning sound. (Luckily fainted—not dead.)”
6) Baloney (Henry P.) is one creative alien’s over-the-top version of “the dog ate my homework.” The many nonsense words (that totally work) are sure to get some laughs, especially when Henry P. forgets the alien word for thank you and accidentally uses the word for “doofbrain.”
P.S. — Bonus Book: I have to mention Patricia Pollaco’s Thank You, Mr. Falker for any struggling learners out there. It’s long for a picture book, so best suited for older kids or adults. Pollaco tells her own story of the shame, embarrassment, and bullying that came with not knowing how to read until she was in 5th grade. Through the help of kind and dedicated Mr. Falker, she finally learns to read. Her confidence, pride and gratitude make this this one a bit of a tear-jerker.
14 thoughts on “6 Great Books About School”
Over the past month, we’ve been reading tons of school books (my oldest started Kindergarten last month). We just requested these from our library and they have them all, except for In English, Of Course. We look forward to reading them and thank you for the recommendations. My daughter’s favorites include: School Picture Day by Lynn Plourde, Velma Gratch and the Way Cool Butterfly by Alan Madison (the illustrations are to-die-for cute), and Rosie Sprout’s Time to Shine by Allison Wortche.
Thanks for YOUR recommendations, too, Audrey! I know School Picture Day, and I’m excited to look up the others.
I” going to have to check out “in English, of course.” Even though we’re back in the US, my two year old keeps asking to go “home” to Germany. Maybe reading about other children who move to the US from all over the world will help comfort her.
Iggy Peck Architect is one of our absolute favorites around our house (also, around many friends’ homes because it is high on my list of best gifts for little ones). I’m always looking for other fun, quality books to add to our collection. I will definitely add these to our list – thanks for the recommendations!
I’m a first grade teacher and I LOVE finding new books, and I haven’t heard of any of these. Love these posts, please continue!!
What a great list of school books! My children also loved the story, First Day Jitters by Julie Danneberg. It’s such a fun surprise at the end!
Also, I’m so glad you included Patricia Polacco’s book. Perhaps my favorite picture book of all time (again for older readers) is her book, Pink and Say. Though I can’t get through the end without crying!
‘My Kindergarten’ is a book my daughter and I read last year when she began kindergarten — we adored it! What’s really neat is that you can seriously read this book for the entire school year with your kiddo ~ it’s a huge book, filled with everything fun you could ever want to learn and experience in the Big K!
We love Iggy Peck Architect! One of our new faves we just discovered this summer. I have to admit, I liked it even more than my son, because it’s fun to read aloud.
Yes, so fun to read aloud! I love it for that reason, too!
My preschool class did a whole theme on architecture and I brought in “Iggy Peck, Architect” and that was a favorite for a long time! We learned about skyscrapers, houses, huts, etc…made houses of sticks, paper, cardboard boxes, blocks, etc. and even learned names of some of the tallest buildings in the world!
So many great picks, Amy! I love your list.
I LOVE Patricia Polacco! I discovered her years ago when I was teaching third grade and seriously love all of her books. I agree that Mr. Falker is a major tearjerker….. in a good way! :)
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