Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Favorite First Week Read Alouds...

There are SO many amazingly fun Read Alouds...

My friend Katie King posted Leo the Late Bloomer on her facebook fan page recently and it got me thinking about selecting read alouds that help develop and cultivate a classroom culture that is important to me.

This is me...toe-dipping back in to Back To School thoughts...

While hosting Chapter 5 of Teach Like A Pirate, I wrote a non-letter letter to myself that would be like a letter I would hope to receive from a parent or student about what my classroom was all about.

Gina from Third Grade Tidbits (who is hosting a great giveaway this week, btw) suggested I turn my non-letter letter into a printable.

So...in preparing this post, I did it. If you'd like it, click the pic...


All fonts from Kimberly Geswein. Background from Bubbly Blond Borders & More
Buntings from Cat Lady Graphics.

UPDATE...for those of you who would like to add it to your office door or to another space, here are two other versions. Thanks, Maura, for the idea!


Make sure to select "fit to page" when you're printing to avoid the white border cutting off the edges.

(Advance warning...I think some books posted twice...though I can't see them in my blogger compose mode...since I don't know code I don't know how to fix it. Sorry! )

This culture and community that is so important to me...a culture of persevering when mistakes are made...one where kids want to figure things out independently...one where we can crack up together and especially make sure we know that every single one of us counts, has strengths, needs to grow and feels loved and cared for by their peers.

That being said...the read alouds I select should speak to these core values...

Here are books I'm thinking about...


I am completely obsessed with Amy Krouse Rosenthal's books...she is unique, clever and profound. Especially when she partners with Tom Lichtenheld for his illustrations.


I want to read The OK Book within the first days of school...It is SO clever...when you turn the OK vertical, it turns into a stick figure person...the message of the book is "I'm okay at a lot of things. Some day I'll be excellent at some things. I'm having a lot of fun being okay along the way."

There are countless applications to this message!

I'll further develop the culture using one of my very favorite books...

Ish by Peter Reynolds helps build the life-critical concept that just because it's not perfect doesn't mean you shouldn't try. 

Another book I'll use is another life message one by a groovy cat...


Pete the Cat is the most loveable and groovy cat that does not let himself get worked up about obstacles..."It's allllll good."

Pete is the mascot in my classrom...I have a 14ish inch plush Pete attached to my easel helping us all throughout the day try to remember that "it's allll good." At home, my son has a plush Pete that is over 2 FEET tall! We lovvvve Pete!

I'm also excited about reading Leo the Late Bloomer as a way to discuss that we're all currently strong at different things and everyone will develop more strengths at different rates...which is ALLLLLL good! Thanks, Katie, for putting it out there on your page!!! (So many reasons you're fab, girly!)

The last fave that comes to mind is by the amazing Kevin Henkes...


Chrysanthemum is wonderful for so many reasons! I love to use it at the beginning of the year to discuss the harmfulness of teasing.

I would SO love to hear what books you enjoy reading to develop your classroom community!!!

By the way...any time you click the titles of the books, it's a hyperlink to the book on Amazon where you can often see more of it inside. Full disclosure: It's also linked to my Amazon Affiliate Account...no pressure...I just do that because if you had been planning to buy it already, why not do it in a way the gives someone a wee credit? I love online shopping off of others' Affiliate links...feel free to leave your link in the comments. :)

29 comments:

  1. The OK Book is a favorite of mine. We turn it into a class book, so the kids get to draw their own OK doing something that they're just OK at.

    ❀ Tammy
    Forever in First

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  2. Thank you for the list! Adding it to my cart now ;)

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  3. Love Chrysanthemum! Thanks for reminding me about some excellent books and introducing me to The OK Book! Awesome!



    Learning With Mrs. Leeby

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    1. Seriously love me some Henkes!
      Hugs, friend!

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  4. A few I've never heard of. Thanks for the heads up to check them out!

    Lindsay
    For the Love of First Grade

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  5. Chrysanthemum is one of my favorites and all the Pete the Cat books are a big hit! Teaching with Giggles

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  6. I will check out the OK Book. I really like that author also. Last summer I read "Encyclopedia of an Ordinary Life" by Amy Krouse Rosenthal. It was an adult book. It was unusual and I loved it!
    Em
    Curious Firsties

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    1. Ooooooh - I am super intrigued!!! Thank you!

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  7. I always read Chrysanthemum & Ish, too! The Dot is another great one by Peter Reynolds. Hits home for me since I'm a horrible artist :) I'm definitely going to check out The OK book. Thanks for the suggestions!

    Molly
    Lucky to Be in First

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    1. I LOVE The Dot, too!!!! He has a new one out that I just ordered, too. :)

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  8. Our principal comes around to each class during the first few days of school to read "Have You Filled a Bucket Today?". He does a great job of talking to the kids about being bucket fillers and dippers. It really helps get the whole school on the same page. Thanks for the freebie!

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    1. I love that book!!! And SO cool that your principal does that!!!!

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  9. Lisa - girl ~ Michelle did a great job on your blog...I love your new makeover honey! Adorable!!!!! Just like you!
    Vicky

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    1. Awwww, thanks SO much, sweet friend!!!!!!!

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  10. I love the new blog design! So cute! Thank you for the sign as well. It is going up framed in my classroom.
    Hilary

    Second Grade is Out of This World!

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  11. I love, love, love your new look! It's beYOUtiful! Thanks for the adorable sign...it's a framer!

    Wendy
    Read With Me ABC

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  12. Screaming over your blog!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  13. Love your new look!! Love the poster...already printed it and now I need to find a frame. Added OK to my Amazon cart. It looks like such a great book.

    Terri Izatt
    KinderKapers

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  14. 1. Love your blog design! Gorgeous.
    2. Never read the OK book--will check out for sure!
    3. We always read Chrysanthemum, Leo the Late Bloomer, and my favorite to read on the very 1st day is First Day Jitters, to let them know that even I am a little nervous about starting a new year!
    4. Have you read The Crayon Box That Talks? Awesome!
    5. K bye. :)

    -Gayla
    Teach On.

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    1. You crack me up! I forgot about The Crayon Box book - so happy you reminded me of it!!!!!! And...THANK YOU!!!!

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  15. Hi there. I love your "This classroom is a..." sign and would love to use it on my guidance office door. I can't figure out how to edit it to say office rather than classroom. Any suggestions before I spend a whole day trying to recreate your work? Thanks.
    Happy New (School) Year.
    Maura

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    1. Done, Maura! I added two pages...one that says office and one that just says This is a...Thanks so much for the idea!

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    2. Thank you so much! That was fast! I am printing it as we speak.
      Can't wait to hang it on my office door at my new school.

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