Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Back-To-School Story Ideas

I've been back to school for two days now, attending meetings, planning with teachers, and cleaning up the library.  On Monday I was exhausted by 10 am and ready for a nap.  No kidding.  Even though I've worked in my house over the summer somehow back-to-school wore me out.

How do you think the kids are going to feel those first few days?  Worn out.  Ready for a nap.  Itching for their handheld electronics or endless amounts of television viewing.  Teachers have to have their game on as kids enter their classrooms.  Kids might come in thrilled for the new year yet it won't take much to lose them if we aren't centered and focused.

Here's a short list of books that I think are perfect for the first few days of school.

1. First Day Jitters by Julie Danneberg: I love this story as it has a bit of a twist that will make kids smile, maybe even giggle and the conversation after reading it is always enlightening.  Sharing this book will show your students that YOU, the teacher, has a sense of humor.  Busy Teacher's Cafe has activities for this book-click their name to pull up website.   And if you want a digital tie-in here is a video clip. The video ends just short of the surprise ending which leaves a window for students to make predictions. Find more teaching resources for this book at Unique Teaching Resources.


Pete the Cat; Rocking in my school shoes by Eric Litwin and James Dean: This jazzy title gives a quick and fun rundown of what the school days will be like and shares a quick trip around the school.  It does not matter what your school shoes look like because once I introduced Pete the Cat last year and I plan to keep him rocking this year as well.  The positive message won't be forgotten. Video to share:

The Kissing Hand by Audrey Penn:  This one is nearly a classic to teachers and children alike.  Every year though I'm surprised by students who've never, ever heard the story.  This is especially appropriate for pre-k, kinder, and first grade students who may have trouble letting parents go on the first days of
school.  In my home copy I was lucky enough to have a page of heart stickers inside the book so every time I read it with my own kids I could grace their palm with a sticker.  Make Learning Fun has activities to compliment this title. Share this collection of videos.

I hope everyone has a cheerful school beginning-we all deserve that, teachers and students alike. As teachers we have the ability to lift our students up and bring a positive message to their education.

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