Although my girls have a few days left until they head back to school, today is my first day back with students.
There are always a lot of rules to go over but I still make time for reading each group a back to school story.
And every year, I am always excited to add a few new titles to my growing list of books I can reach for and be happy to share.
Harper Collins graciously sent me four new back to school titles for my review, each one a quality picture book I can share with the lower grades I see.
Chu's First Day of School by Neil Gaiman and Adam Rex
Chu's First Day of School is a follow up to the picture book, Chu's Day. This panda is anxious about going to school, unsure of how things will go. When the big day finally arrives, students are expected to introduce themselves and one thing they are good at. Chu thinks hard as other students give their responses. When he finally gives his answer, it is unique and memorable.
Colorful illustrations and short text make this a perfect book for pre-K students who are just beginning school. My soon-to-be second grade daughter was excited to see this book as well. At this point, she can read the book herself, but is attracted to the cuteness of Chu and her memories of reading Chu's Day.
Monsters Love School by Mike Austin
Little Sister's first comment as I looked at this book was how much she enjoys Monster books. This book is fun - brightly colored illustrations draw readers in to the story of monsters getting ready to go back to school. Cute names like Mrs. Warble, the music teacher, and Mr. Reed the librarian, add a bit of fun to this story as monsters shop for school supplies, learn history, and eat school lunch. Monsters Love School is a follow-up to Austin's previous book about the monsters, Monsters Love Colors.
Little Lola by Julie Saab and David Gothard is another cute back to school story. Lola is a cat napping on a park bench when Little Lola begins. She has a few things to keep her busy - one of them being to have an adventure. When she happens upon clothes, glasses and a backpack, Lola quickly dons the outfit, and hops on the school bus. Lola loves school! Despite a few mishaps, Lola makes it through the day, returning to her park bench that afternoon, having completed her "to do" list.
Another picture book with few words, preschool and kindergarten students will be able to sit still for this story, and enjoy discussing Lola's school adventures.
Flip and Fin We Rule the School by Timothy Gill and Neil Neil Numberman
This back to school story is great entertainment. I loved reading the jokes that Flip and Fin tell throughout this picture book. Although this book may seem like a story for the lower elementary crowd, I am planning on reading it to my third and fourth grade classes, who will be able to better understand the jokes. Gill also includes fun information about the various fish that are featured in this story at book's end. In addition to Flip and Fin being a great back to school book, teachers wanting a good introductory/anticipatory set type of book for an ocean/fish unit would find this book fits the bill.
I'll still be digging out some of my good ol' standard back to school books, but these new stories are ones I am anxious to share with my students this week.