Thursday, August 13, 2020

Back to School: For My Son


My son is starting first grade this year, so in addition to reading him all these books I'm sharing with you, I wanted to find some just for him, and some he could possibly read by himself.

On the First Day of First Grade by Tish Rabe, illustrated by Sarah Jennings, is a fun book set to the tune of the 12 Days of Christmas. It goes over things students do during the first twelve days of first grade. Since we'll be doing remote learning from home for at least the first semester, I loved reading this book to my son to help explain how things will be different. Even if he was going to school in person, he wouldn't be doing the exact same things the first graders in this book were doing, so it was a jumping off point for a conversation about how the school year will be different than we expected, but also how school is different for everyone, everywhere - and I think that helped soften the blow of why his first grade year will be somewhat strange.

Dragons from Mars Go to School by Deborah Aronson, illustrated by Colin Jack, was the perfect book because my kid is hooked on dragons right now! It was just silly enough to be a fun read, while still teaching some lessons about being kind of new students and friends alike. The rhymes made it really run to read aloud, and it's been on repeat for several bedtime routines now!

School of Fish by Jane Yolen, illustrated by Mike Moran, is, of course, the book I want my son to read aloud. It's a level one Ready to Read book, so it's just right for his age. It's a great book to instill confidence in younger students - both with their reading progress AND going back to school! There are mantras in the book like "I'm slick. I'm cool. I'm ready for school." that are fun and empowering for your student to say. There is also a great way about calming and centering yourself and counting to ten.

The Pout-Pout Fish Goes to School by Deborah Diesen, illustrated by Dan Hanna is one we have to read every year. We discovered Pout-Pout Fish when my son was about six months old, and we've loved every book since! His school book is especially fun because it has a signature Pout-Pout rhyme that kids will start saying along with you after they hear it a couple times! It's a great book about understanding where you are now and how you will learn and grow in time.

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