It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? #IMWAYR is a community of bloggers who link up to share what they are reading. Kellee Moye of Unleashing Readers and Jen Vincent of Teach Mentor Texts decided to give it a #kidlit focus and encourage everyone who participates to visit at least 3 of the other #kidlit book bloggers that link up and leave comments for them.
Since tomorrow is the first day of school in my district, Etta and I have chosen picture books for the first week of school. These books will be the #classroombookaday read alouds in the second grade classroom I am sponsoring.
A Tiger Tail by Mike Boldt
Oh no! Anya wakes up and discovers she has a tiger tail! To make matters worse, it just happens to be the first day of school! When her parents do not seem concerned, Anya decides to take care of her predicament by herself. Her attempts though are not working , and she finds herself at the front of her school building still sporting a tail. Read the book to find out how Anya’s first day of school went.
This amusing yet warm picture book is my pick for our first read aloud for #classroombookaday. Through the engaging illustrations, children will relate to Anya’s apprehension and her frustrations when her initial efforts do not work. Children will learn that we are all unique and the importance of accepting each other’s differences.
Strictly No Elephants by Lisa Mantchev Illustrated by Taeeun Yoo
Friends help each other in times of need as demonstrated by a boy and his pet elephant. When they attempt to join others at Pet Club Day, they are greeted with a sign that states Strictly No Elephants. On his way home, the deflated boy passes by a girl with a pet skunk. The boy and girl collaborate to solve their dilemma by creating their own inclusive club with the motto: Never leave anyone behind.
This beautifully illustrated picture book is a must for #classroombookaday for the first week of school. Children will learn the definition of true friendship which is accepting and celebrating each other’s differences. The illustrations tenderly capture the emotions of the boy and his elephant and the changing mood throughout the story.
What George Forgot by Kathy Wolff Illustrated by Richard Byrne
Getting ready for school, George is certain that he forgot something, but what is it? Throughout the story, George recalls and questions himself about all the things he needed to do to get ready (Well, I guess George didn’t need to put crust whiskers on his sister during breakfast).
Being a huge fan of Richard Byrne’s illustrations, I love George’s expressions as he is trying to figure out what he forgot. Children will love the humor in some of George’s morning tasks like shaving (only on Tuesdays) and his invention, the flying backpack-putting-on machine. So what did George forget? Observant children will be able to pinpoint exactly what George forgot. Kathy Wolff’s story will not only entertain children but also make them realize that George’s sister does not hold a grudge about the crust whiskers!
Sea Monster’s First Day by Kate Messner Illustrated by Andy Rash
Ernest, the sea monster, is nervous about his first day of school. His mother gives him the following advice: introduce yourself, play nicely, and use your imagination. Ernest takes his mother’s words to heart but because of his size, Ernest has difficulty fitting in. Fortunately, Ernest meets some fish that look like him and takes a chance on introducing himself. A friendship develops trading food, telling jokes, and playing games. When Ernest spots a familiar shape above water, he is intrigued. Could this be a friend that looks like him? Regardless, Ernest learns how to make friends using this mother’s last piece of advice-use your imagination.
Ernest is such a likeable character that children will truly enjoy this read aloud. As a teacher, I especially love the speech bubbles which add more humor to the story, The message of Sea Monster’s First Day is simple yet beautiful-the only way to have a friend is to be one.
Ally-saurus and the First Day of School by Richard Torrey
From the very first page, the reader knows that Ally loves dinosaurs. Author-illustrator Richard Torrey uses crayon sketching to draw spikes and a tail on Ally, known as Ally-saurus, to convey her affinity for the extinct creatures. Ally-saurus outwardly shows her dinosaur love by dressing in a dinosaur T-shirt and putting on her dinosaur backpack before heading to school for the first day.
At school, Ally-saurus chomps, roars, and makes a dinosaur nameplate. She is surprised that she is the only dinosaur and is out-numbered by princesses. Sitting alone at lunch, Ally-saurus wishes she could eat with her stuffed animals. But then 3 children join her lunch table-Cindy, a dragon, Jason, a lion, and Walter who loves his new lunch box. Ally-saurus soon learns that she can fun with other animals and even princesses.
My favorite part of the story is when Ally-saurus and her class visit the library. Richard Torrey shows each child’s interest using crayon drawings and the children’s excitement about finding a book warms this reading specialist’s heart. Will Ally-saurus choose a dinosaur book to take home or could another animal spark her interest? Read the book to find out!
Thank you so much for reading! Etta and I hope you have a fabulous week!