children's books

Starting School

The first day of school is just around the corner! Get your kids ready to return with these picture books. Curated by Bonita Bignar.

We Don’t Eat Our Classmates by Ryan T. Higgins
book
OverDrive eBook with Audio
Hoopla eAudiobook
Penelope the dinosaur starts school, but it’s hard to make friends when her classmates are so delicious! 
 
It’s the first day of school for Penelope Rex, and she can’t wait to meet her classmates. But it’s hard to make human friends when they’re so darn delicious! That is, until Penelope gets a taste of her own medicine and finds she may not be at the top of the food chain after all… Readers will gobble up this hilarious new story from award-winning author-illustrator Ryan T. Higgins. 


The Pigeon Has to Go to School! by Mo Willems
book
Why does the Pigeon have to go to school? He already knows everything! And what if he doesn’t like it? What if the teacher doesn’t like him? What if he learns TOO MUCH!?! 
 
Ask not for whom the school bell rings; it rings for the Pigeon! 


Pete the Cat: Too Cool for School! by Kim Dean
book
OverDrive eBook
Hoopla eBook
Hoopla eAudiobook
Pete the Cat can’t decide what outfit he should wear to make him look cool for school. He has so many colorful choices in his closet to choose from, how will he decide on one? 
 
In this hilarious I Can Read tale, Pete learns it’s not what you wear, but how you wear it that makes you cool. 


Amelia Bedelia’s First Day of School by Herman Parish
book
Hoopla eAudiobook
Amelia Bedelia goes to school and mixes up just about everything in this funny picture book about the childhood of the iconic character. 

The first book in the nationally bestselling series about the childhood of America’s favorite literal-minded housekeeper, Amelia Bedelia is sure that she will absolutely love school—after all, what’s not to love? But after hopping on the bus “just like a bunny” (hurry up, sweetie!), confusing her name tag with a game (we are not playing tag), and gluing herself to her seat (oh, dear), Amelia Bedelia discovers that what she takes for granted is not always the way the world works. Still, friendships are formed, lessons are learned, and projects are completed, and through it all Amelia Bedelia’s teacher, Mrs. Edwards, offers gentle guidance and an open heart. 


Will I Have a Friend? by Miriam Cohen
book
book
Hoopla eAudiobook
Hoopla Movie
Jim faces his fears of making a friend on his first day of kindergarten in this picture book by Miriam Cohen, chosen as the Library of Congress’s Children’s Book of the Year. 
 
When Pa was taking Jim to school for the first time, Jim said, “Will I have a friend at school?” “I think you will,” said Pa. 
 
But even his father’s gentle reassurance doesn’t make Jim feel any better. The other children in kindergarten are scary strangers to him. He’s sure that he’ll never find a friend…until naptime, when he discovers someone who feels the way he does. 


I’m Telling You, Dex, Kindergarten Rocks! By Katie Davis
book
Dexter is ready for kindergarten. Sort of. Well, actually, he’s maybe kind of a little bit scared, perhaps even terrified, one might say. Because what if he gets lost? Or, what if the teacher is mean? Or, he misses his mom or dad? Or, worst of all, he loses his most important ally, Rufus? 
 
With the same warmth, exuberance, and sly wit that have made her a favorite of booksellers and children, Katie Davis tackles a problem every kid–and parent–has to face sooner or later: first-day fears. And she shows that it’s okay to be scared, but that, as Dexter’s older sister Jessie says, “Kindergarten rocks!” 


Get Ready for Second Grade, Amber Brown by Paula Danziger
book
Spanish book
Amber Brown is excited to be starting second grade – and a little nervous. She’s worried that the new teacher might not be as nice as she hopes. Plus, Hannah Burton is going to be in her class, and Amber knows Hannah can be mean. But on the way to school with her best friend Justin, Amber makes a decision. She is going to be ready for whatever happens. And second grade had better be ready for Amber Brown! 

Wemberly Worried by Kevin Henkes
book
Wemberly worried about everything. Big things. Little things. And things in between. Then it was time for school to start. And Wemberly worried even more. If you ever worry (or know someone who does), this is the book for you. 
 
Wemberly worried about spilling her juice, about shrinking in the bathtub, even about snakes in the radiator. She worried morning, noon, and night. “Worry, worry, worry,” her family said. “Too much worry.” 
 
And Wemberly worried about one thing most of all: her first day of school. But when it’s time to go back to school and she meets a fellow worrywart in her class, Wemberly realizes that school is too much fun to waste time worrying! 


The Night Before Kindergarten by Natasha Wing
book
‘Twas the night before kindergarten, 
and as they prepared, 
kids were excited, 
and a little bit scared. 
 
It’s the first day of school! Join the kids as they prepare for kindergarten, packing school supplies, posing for pictures, and the hardest part of all—saying goodbye to Mom and Dad. But maybe it won’t be so hard once they discover just how much fun kindergarten really is! 


Look Out Kindergarten, Here I Come! by Nancy L. Carlson
book
The first day of kindergarten is finally here, and Henry can’t wait to paint pictures, sing songs, and practice counting. When he gets to school, though, he’s not so sure he’s ready for kindergarten. But before long Henry discovers that the only thing he’s not ready for is how much fun he’s going to have at school! This gently humorous, encouraging story will give children about to enter kindergarten an extra boost of confidence. 
 
“Perfect for parents to share with their children, and the endearing Henry will offer reassurance to even the most hesitant pre-kindergartners.” 

*All summaries courtesy of the publisher unless otherwise noted.

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