Top Ten Tuesday: Back to School Picture Books


top ten tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish. The feature was created because The Broke and Bookish are particularly fond of lists (as are we!). Each week a new Top Ten list topic is given and bloggers can participate.

 Today’s Topic: Back to School Picture Books 


1. The Kissing Hand by Audrey Penn

the kissing hand

I’ve posted about this book a lot lately. My son is going into pre-k this fall, and I am so anxious! As a parent, I am eternally grateful to have this book to help him (and me!) with this transition.

2. Each Kindness by Jacqueline Woodson

each kindness

I read this book on the first day with my pre-service teachers. It is such an incredible book to teach about the importance of kindness and its rippling effects.

3. My Friend Maggie by Hannah E. Harrison

my friend maggie

In a way, this book is similar to the last. It emphasizes the importance of kindness. It also teaches the ways that friendships evolve and why we should stand up for each other in the face of adversity.

4. The Name Jar by Yangsook Choi

name jarjpg

I love this book because of the ways it integrates culture. Unhei works hard to pick a new name that her peers can pronounce. It is difficult to be the new kid in school, and I think that students will really relate to Unhei’s story. It is a great book to share on the first day as students struggle with their anxiety and nervous jitters.

5. This School Year Will Be THE BEST! by Kay Winters

This School Year Will Be the Best!

I love setting goals on the first day, and this is a great book to share to introduce an activity like this!


I like to start my year talking about kindness and showing that we should all care for each other no matter what. I really like to try to make my classroom a community where everyone knows we are there for each other. Here are some books that help open up communication and understanding for each other.

1. Each Kindness by Jacqueline Woodson

each kindness

I read this book to my students on the first day of school, and we make kindness statements sharing something we are going to try to do in the upcoming school year to be kind to others.

2. Normal Norman by Tara Lazar

normal norman

I love the discussion of what is “normal” in this book. Just because someone doesn’t fit the description of “normal” doesn’t mean they aren’t awesome!

3. Red by Michael Hall

red a crayon's story

I know this books ends up on a lot of my TTT lists, but I think it is brilliant how Hall is able to talk about identity and labeling in a way that makes kids understand and talk about it without them even realizing it.

4. The Perfect Percival Priggs by Julie-Anne Graham

Perfect Percival Priggs

This book leads to amazing conversations about perfection, the unrealistic aspect of it, and the anxiety that may come with it.

5. The Most Magnificent Thing by Ashley Spires


This book is a bit different than the others. This book promotes innovation and not giving up. It starts conversations about creativity, working hard, and imagination.

Which picture books are your favorites to read on the first day of school?

RickiSig and Signature

2 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday: Back to School Picture Books”

  1. I just gave Red to a child therapist! I loved it! The Kissing Hand was a favorite first day of school read aloud in my first grade!


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