It’s that time of the year again…the August 10 for 10 Picture Book Event! This is the third year that Cathy Mere and Mandy Robek have hosted this compilation of blog and Twitter posts (#PB10for10) about the 10 picture books you just can’t live without. I am excited to share the 10 books that I will most definitely enjoy again this year in my kindergarten classroom – a few of these suggested in posts from last year’s 10 for 10. Enjoy!
1. Red Rubber Boot Day by Mary Lyn Ray – A wonderful celebration of a rainy day, stomping through puddles and enjoying the rain. This was a writing mentor text we returned to often. Her book Mud is equally fabulous and pairs well with this one.
2. Big Frog Can’t Fit In by Mo Willems – Another fun book by Mo Willems, this complex pop-up, pop-out, flap book is the story of poor Big Frog who is too big for the book. With a little help from his friends he finds a solution to the problem.
3. Stars by Mary Lyn Ray and Marla Frazee – The illustrations and story in this book are just lovely. From stars in the sky to stars on a magic wand, short lines of text explore stars and the many different ways stars can be seen and found in the world. Beautiful language and exquisite illustrations made this a book that many children “stood on the shoulders” of as they wrote their own books about stars.
4. Help! A Story of Friendship by Holly Keller – The animals manage to convince Mouse that Snake wants to eat him instead of be his friend. Mouse listens to the gossip and becomes scared of Snake – until he gets into a situation where only Snake can help. This book launched some great conversations when we had issues with children talking about others in unkind ways and helped the class come to the conclusion that problems are best solved when you go straight to the source, and making up stories about other people isn’t a good way to make friends. A pretty big concept for kindergarteners, and an important life lesson as well.
5. Me…Jane by Patrick McDonnell – This true story of Jane Goodall makes me tear up just thinking about it. A fabulous, simple text, yet deep story of following your dreams. I ended our last day of school with this read aloud (and many tears). I hope my kids remember the message it left us with that you can be anything you want to be – follow your passions and don’t let anything stop you.
6. If Rocks Could Sing: A Discovered Alphabet by Leslie McGuirk – A wonderful addition to your alphabet books, this author found rocks that were in the shape of all the letters of the alphabet. She compiled the photos in this book along with short text to accompany and explain each of the rock shapes. It is great and the kids just loved seeing the alphabet in rocks. It inspired many of them to look for letters in rocks and outdoors as well.
7. Chickens to the Rescue by John Himmelman – This was one of our all time favorites! It’s a laugh-out-loud, “read it again!” book that the kids love. A fun, crazy story about a family living on a farm who has many misadventures but never needs to worry because the chickens come to the rescue! Or maybe they DO need to worry… We had some great conversations about whether the chickens really were helping or just making more of a mess. This is the first in a series and each book ends with clues about the next book. Just go ahead and get the whole series (Pigs to the Rescue and Cows to the Rescue) – your kids will be begging to see what happens next!
8. Grumpy Bird by Jeremy Tankard – We all have bad days and Grumpy Bird is the best cure for a grumpy class (or teacher). Ha! A good story of friends helping out and turning a bad day around.
9. The Doghouse by Jan Thomas – I discovered Jan Thomas this year and she immediately became a favorite author in our classroom. We used her books for mentor texts in writing and as “laugh out loud” favorite read alouds to revisit again and again. The Doghouse was a favorite.
10. Bob the Dog by Rodrigo Folgueira – Pat gave this book to our class as a gift and it immediately went to the “Our Favorites” box. The illustrations are hilarious and tell much of the story. The kids fall in love with Bob, the dog who accidentally swallows a canary. Bob is distraught over this situation and tries many ways to get the canary out. It’s only Jeremy the Canary’s mom who can finally get him to come out. We loved learning why Jeremy went down Bob’s throat (because he didn’t want to clean his room), and what his punishment is (cleaning Bob’s room). We liked this book so much we made a VoiceThread of our comments and thoughts about the book.
What are some of your favorite books? Are any of my favorites ones you use in your classroom?