Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Book Talk Tuesday: Back to School Blues?

Even though students are usually excited to start school, there may be some trepidation about the year ahead: the new teachers, new friends, new challenges. Here are some picture books to put in the hands of those youngsters (and their parents) who are feeling nervous.

Get Out of Bed! by Robert Munsch, illustrated by Alan and Lea Daniel

Amy won't wake up on the first day of school. Everyone in her family tries to shout and rustle her up, but it's just not working. How will they get her to school? Move her bed into the classroom, that's how! And so the events of the school day carry on around her, as she dozes through. What will happen on day 2? Her classmates have the last laugh - that's for sure! Cartoony watercolor illustrations and a repetitive story pattern make this fun for kindergarten through grade 2.

I Hate School, by Jeanne Willis, illustrated by Tony Ross
This funny story-in-rhyme is similar to the popular "Black Lagoon" series. Our main character hates school for the wildest possible reasons: the teacher is a "warty toad"  and children are fed "rabbit poo" at lunch. But the surprise ending here is not that she's making it all up...it's that she really likes it! This has a great bouncing beat, and expressive line-drawn watercolors add to the hilarity. Perfect for grades 1 through 3.

I'm Not Going to School Today, by Robie H. Harris, illustrated by Jan Ormerod
A little boy gets all ready for his first day of school the night before, but when he realizes he'll be leaving his stuffed monkey behind, he decides not to go. He announces that he's not going to school the next morning, and lists off all of the little anxieties that many youngsters can connect with. His parents suggest bringing "Hank", his monkey, to school to help them both feel less alone. As he meets his teachers and enjoys the various first day activities, he decides that school is lots of fun. Realistic double-page illustrations and the emphasis on being at school for the first time ever make this a good choice for PreK and Kindergarten.

Little Brown Bear Won't Go to School, by Jane Dyer
Little Brown Bear decides that he doesn't need to go to school and that he'd be happier having a job instead. But as he goes to various places around town he discovers that he doesn't have the skills he needs to do the work. He can't write, so he can't take orders at the diner. He can't measure and cut, so he can't help the carpenter. Every place he tries ends up causing big problems. Poor little bear...where will he be most successful? At school!
Charming watercolors emphasize the caring nature of all of the animals in the town. This is good for Kindergarten and Grade 1.

No comments:

Post a Comment