I love, love, love children's books and probably have a bit of a problem when it comes to buying them, but a teacher can never have too many books, right?? There are so many wonderful books out there...here are my faves for back to school!
First Day Jitters is wonderful and it has a surprise ending...It is about a girl who does not want to go to school because she is new. She doesn't want to get out of bed, etc...At the end, you find out the girl is actually the teacher. I love reading this because the kiddos (and even I) can totally relate to the main character's feelings. It is a great way to start the first morning, when everyone is a bit anxious.
Miss Smith's Incredible Story is a great book about stories coming alive. I love using this to get students excited about reading workshop.
Library Mouse is great for introducing Writing Workshop. The mouse is a secret author who writes tiny books for his local library. At the end, there is a part where the students look into "Meet the Author" box to see their own reflections. I made a box similar to the one found in the book, and my kids always get excited to see themselves in the mirror and start creating their own books and stories. Here is a picture of our "Meet the Author" Box...
My other faves for the beginning of the year include a variety of Kevin Henkes books. We usually read Chrysanthemum to talk about our names and our special qualities, and Lilly's Purple Plastic Purse is a great one for introducing rules or a class promise.