Today’s post is brought to you by CKA Board Member and former kindergarten teacher extraordinaire, Helen Faul, who shares with us these great ideas to get your year started right.

“Here is my favorite book to begin the school year.

What a Wonderful World by George David Weiss and Bob Thiele

The pictures are very colorful and eye catching and the print is large.  It is a good book to illustrate the difference between words and pictures.  I like to read it several times and the put the music on with Louis Armstrong singing.  After the children are very familiar with the book.  We take a walk around the school yard and discuss “What a Wonderful School”   The children draw pictures and dictate words to go with the pictures.

Another good activity for the beginning of the year is Jim Gill’s book May There Always Be Sunshine.  Again, easy clear illustrations with single line of print under the pictures.  After reading, we discuss thoughts that they can add to the book.  We sing the song with their ideas.  I have had children do paintings to illustrate their thoughts and bound it into a book for our own ‘May there always be’ book.


Another good book to use with the class but more complicated is Toni Morrison’s The Big Box.  It is about three children who have difficulty with rules and the parents create a world inside a box for them.  In the end the children learn that they can handle their freedom.

Last one for you is L is for Loving by Ken Wilson Max.  It is about different feelings and emotions and us an ABC book.  The pictures are childlike and colorful.  They help express feelings.  I would spread the reading of this book over a couple of weeks and we would talk about the feeling of the day and think of situations when we feel the way described.  Later in the year I would use it as an ABC book. This book is published by Hyperion Books for Children.”

Looking for other books to kick off your year?  Check out these posts for lots more ideas:
Books to Get Your Year off to a Great Start
Get Your Year off to a Great Start with Must-Have Books!

Looking for other great ideas to get your year off to a great start?  Check out these posts:
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