(I'm going to pause right here and say that I just typed out, erased, typed again, and erased again about 6 different paragraphs all describing how I feel about sending Little Man off to school this year. I am an absolute jumble of emotions over it, but that's a post for another time.)
Now, back to the point of this post.... picture books! I love, love, love them! I also love favorite characters... As a teacher, I would collect every single book about a certain character. As a mom, I am beyond thrilled when my boys find a character they like and want to read every single book. Love it all!
This week and next week are all about school starting for us. Here is our list of our favorite characters' back-to-school stories (in no order at all because I'd never be able to actually put them in order)!
I love the Berenstain Bears! They instill such great morals into their precious cubs. I so wish I had the patience and grace of Mama Bear and she handles all of their adventures!
My teacher heart loves the repetitive language of this book. Early readers will enjoy "reading" the words along with you!
Not going to lie, I *may* tear up every single time I get to the line, "It's too much for little llama." Ugh. It's too much for Mommy!
Franklin is just so good! He's such a wholesome little turtle! It wasn't until I became a teacher that I began to fully appreciate how good-natured Franklin is, but he was definitely Little Man's first favorite character!
We love the "How Do Dinosaurs..." series. I like to act this one out with the boys. Right now, they're at the age that Little Man will act it out for Baby Boy. Hilarious!
I don't know if this "technically" counts as a favorite character. The Old Lady is a character, right? Either way, I love them all! The repetitive language is fantastic in this one as well. It has a such a great rhythm and flow. I actively seek out new books in this series. When I saw that a school-themed version came out, it instantly went into the rotation!
If you have younger ones, there is also The Night Before Preschool and The Night Before Kindergarten. All of them are super cute!
As a work-from-home mom, I teach from home. I'm a 4th grade reading teacher. My theme in my "classroom" this year is frogs. I will definitely be incorporating lots of Froggy books. If you hang around the blog long enough, you just might see a full year's curriculum based around Froggy books. This, and the Old Lady series, are my absolute favorites. Seriously, my favorites.
Curious George was Little Man's 2nd birthday theme. He was a favorite then and he's a favorite now. Who doesn't love an adorable monkey who is crazy curious about life? I mean, what could go wrong with that?!
Clifford is great. Puppy Clifford is absolutely fantastic. He's precious! He ranks right up there with Franklin. He's helpful, kind, respectful... Let's get some more of that into this generation, shall we?
There are actually a few Little Critter books that relate to school. This one is on our list this year. We own one of the other ones (The Best Teacher Ever). I'm pretty sure we went through a phase and read that one every single night for a few weeks. I may or may not have that one memorized. I think Little Critter and Little Man could be brothers.
When I taught Pre-K, I had this in big book format. We had a whole series of lessons on it. I have very fond memories of circle times with this book. I always love a good book that encourages great, healthy friendships in children. Even as adults, that's sometimes hard to find.
Splat the Cat is something else. Little Man pulled out the Halloween story a few weeks ago and has been begging to read it every night. Seriously, it's a battle if I say it's too early to Halloween stories. We haven't gotten to this one yet in our list. Hopefully it will be an acceptable substitution.
This one was also one I had in big book format. Minerva Louise is just too much! It encourage some great thinking as I asked my students to link the pictures and text. Minerva Louise finds things like yarn, but thinks it's a funny sort of straw for her nest. It's a very intentional book when it comes to making little ones use those good brains!
I mean... who doesn't love this series. It's another one that I don't think can technically be considered a favorite character, but it's definitely a favorite series! We own every single one! See my post here about a busy bag activity for If You Give a Mouse a Cookie! We got to meet Mouse at a library storytime last summer. Little Man loved it!
So there you have it! *Most* of the favorite characters we love and definitely a great list of back-to-school read alouds for you and your little ones! Pray over those precious babies and cherish every moment you have. I'm reminded daily how quickly it goes by!
Every night, when I pray for my boys, one of the verses I pray is Luke 2:52. I'd like to pray that verse for all of us today.
Father, may our children grow and seek to be like Your Son. May they grow in wisdom and in stature, and in favor with You, God, and with man this year. May their teachers grow. May we grow as parents. May Your will be done in our children this year, Lord. Amen.
If I'm going to be honest with all of you, I'm struggling this year. I'm having a harder time letting go this year in first grade than I did in Kindergarten. Even as I type this now and I typed that prayer, I'm crying. Can I ask for prayer from each of you? As moms, we know it's hard to let our babies go. Can we join together and pray for each other and our little ones and their teachers as this year begins? I know we can. Y'all are awesome.
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