Tuesday 30 August 2016

Top Ten Tuesday

It's back to school time in the US and UK, so this week's Top Ten is all about the new school year.

Back To School Freebie -- anything "back to school" related.

I used to be a preschool teacher. The beginning of the new school was a big change for everyone concerned - kids, parents and teachers!

Our new school year also heralds the end of the summer holiday period. But for those of us in the Southern Hemisphere, that means the last week in January. 

When I was teaching, I began each school year with two lovely little books about Titch. 
Titch was little, but wanted to be big.

It was a theme my new preschoolers embraced every year.

My former assistants still remember these two books as Bron's first day books. Hopefully there are generations of kids who also remember Titch fondly.

Pat Hutchins

You'll Soon Grow Into them Titch
Pat Hutchins

Another great book about growing up and developmental change that I read to most of my classes early on was written by one of Australia's first children's laureate, Alison Lester.

When Frank was Four
Alison Lester

A personal favourite that I liked to read early in the preschool year was Harry. It deals with belonging and identity and had a strong emotional impact on many of my classes.

Harry the Dirty Dog 
Gene Zion

Dogger deals with some of the usual childhood fears - fear of the dark and fear of being alone and lost. It became a great way to get to know the inner workings of my new classes! 

Shirley Hughes

How my classes responded to these books gave me lots of clues to their interests, fears and particular talents. 
As each year progressed, we would head down very different literary paths with each group based on the responses and discussions that these books provoked. 

Some groups loved to laugh, others wanted to be moved. Some classes soaked up new ideas and information like sponges and others resisted everything you tried. Some classes enjoyed being scared and others would have nightmares at the merest hint of a darker theme in a book. 

These six books opened the windows into so many souls and told me so much.

Who Sank the Boat is an Aussie favourite. Full of fun predictive text and illustrations. 

Who Sank the Boat
Pamela Allen

At the other end of the school year, my big, grown-up preschoolers began to get ready to transition into big school. December was a huge month for them.

They had dance school Christmas pageant rehearsals, end of preschool performances and 'big school' orientation visits.

The kids were excited and overwhelmed.

The next three books are great stories about starting Kindergarten at big school for the first time in Australia.

They take you through the worries, the routines, the school uniforms, lunch boxes and playground games.

My First Day at School
Meredith Costain

First Day
Andrew Daddo

Look, There's a Hippopotamus in our Playground Eating Cake 
Hazel Edwards

Finally, no back to school list would be complete without the perennial favourite. The one book that embraces childhood change, inspires everyone who reads it and gives hope to us all that we can do it! At any age.

Oh The Places You Will Go
Dr Seuss

Do you have a favourite back to school book?

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.


  1. Anonymous31/8/16

    Great list! These all look like delightful reads; of course the only one I read was Oh, the Places You'll Go! which is applicable to any age and stage in life :)

    My TTT

  2. I love picture books. I miss that phase of life when my children were young.

    1. Hold onto your favourites for the grand kids one day -)

  3. Harry the Dirty Dog...that's a memory I'd forgotten I had. But the title and cover brought it back.

  4. What a great list. I'm sure you were a fabulous teacher Brona. I've never heard of Titch before.


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