Books by Theme
The backpack is packed, the lunch money is in hand, and oh it's time for a new school year! Getting ready for school means a lot of changes — a new grade, teachers, friends, and routines, but it's all fun and safe when shared within the covers of a book. Kids ages 3-9 will enjoy the recommended children's books on this list, which are all about going to school.
Back to School: A Global Journey
Beautiful, joy-filled, color photographs of children studying, learning, exploring, and having fun invites young readers to see other kids just like them from all over the world. Whether they take a school bus, a boat, or a rickshaw to get there, kids around the globe are going to school and growing smarter and more curious every day.
Danitra Brown, Class Clown
Zuri and Danitra are best friends, but have very different responses to school from first day jitters all the way to the halfway mark of the school year. Poems combine with luminous watercolors to chronicle the girls' range of experiences and concerns.
Hunter’s Best Friend at School
Hunter learns that even though he and Stripe are best friends, he can still be true to his feelings. The gentle text and humorous illustrations demonstrate the difficulty presented by peer pressure. Hunter and Stripe become rivals but resolve it in Hunter & Stripe and the Soccer Showdown.
In the Leaves
On a beautiful autumn morning, Xiao Ming, his mom and his friends visit a farm. As they explore the season and the location, Xiao Ming introduces his friends to several Chinese characters. Textured cut paper collage extend the story and the learning.
I’m New Here
Three students are immigrants from Guatemala, Korea, and Somalia and have trouble speaking, writing, and sharing ideas in English in their new American elementary school. Through self-determination and with encouragement from their peers and teachers, the students learn to feel confident and comfortable in their new school without losing a sense of their home country, language, and identity.
Lola Goes to School
Lola and her family prepare for the first day of preschool the night before, then get up early, take pictures, and head to class. Lola puts her things in her cubby, chooses her activities, reads, plays, and has a snack. Before she knows it, it's time to sing the good-bye song and rush into Mommy’s arms for a warm reunion.
Five-year-old Luna is afraid she'll find monsters at her new school until a kind teacher and her new classmates show her that she has nothing to fear in this touching bilingual story.
Panda Math: Learning about Subtraction from Hua Mei & Mei Sheng
In 2003, two giant pandas gave birth to Hua Mei at the San Diego Zoo. Hua Mei’s growth is chronicled using basic addition and subtraction while life with her parents at the zoo is presented on opposing pages. Clear photographs and straightforward text provide a fascinating portrait of these engaging animals while introducing math functions..
Ready, Set, Preschool: Stories, Poems and& Picture Games
Children and their parents are encouraged to get ready for preschool in stories, poem and games that deal with a range of skills and topics: basic shapes, friends, the alphabet, body parts, and more. Activities and information are vivified with cartoon-like illustrations that create movement and show the action. A note for parents completes this attractive package.
Bitty, the smallest mouse in the family is sure that her mother won’t miss her when she follows the big kids to school. Of course Bitty’s mom misses her but Bitty is taken into school and becomes the teacher’s helper until her worried mom comes to pick her up. The author/illustrator has newly added a minimal text to this once wordless but still winning tale of the younger sibling left behind.
Rhymes, games and even insults have been part of an oral tradition as long as there have been children, outdoor activities and playgrounds (remember “Liar, liar, pants on fire…”or “I’m rubber, you’re glue….”?). These lively ditties combine with humorous illustrations for a contemporary and playful look at a shared childhood tradition.
The Best Seat in Second Grade
When not picked as pet helper, second grader, Sam, decides to take the class hamster on their field trip. Unfortunately, George Washington gets mixed up with other hamsters at the science museum but Sam proves that he is knowledgeable and saves the day (or at least the hamster). Children will recognize Sam’s behavior and his emotions in this easy to read school story.
This Is a School
A loving celebration of school and all it may signify: work and play, creativity and trust, and a supportive community that extends beyond walls. A school isn’t just a building — it is all the people who work and learn together. It is a place for discovery and asking questions. A place for sharing, for helping, and for community.
Wow! It is fall and time for school! Share Izzy's first day as she travels from her mountain home to gleefully experience the first day. A large format supports the bold, highly detailed illustrations where readers can find Izzy to share her excitement.
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