Titles for the First-Day-of-School Read-Alouds


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There are so many benefits of reading aloud to children that it is a nonnegotiable in our daily schedule. It doesn’t matter if we teach wide-eyed kindergartners, rolling-eyed middle-schoolers, or towering-above-us high-schoolers: we start with powerful texts on day one and read something every day until they leave our presence on day 180.

It is always exciting to think about what book we want to start a new year with. Here are some of our favorite titles for the first day of school:


  1. They All Saw a Cat by Brendan Wenzel
    Our own perspective shapes what we see and feel and the students in our class may see things differently from each other.
  2. Love by Matt de la Peña
    We build our classroom community and start with love for ourselves and each other.
  3. After the Fall (How Humpty Dumpty Got Back Up Again) by Dan Santat
    We will work together to do great things. 


  1. First Day Jitters by Julie Danneberg
    Everyone can relate to this.
  2. Chrysanthemum by Kevin Henkes
    From here, we can discuss how we want to treat each other in our classroom.
  3. Frindle by Andrew Clements
    Reading this begins our yearlong love affair with words.


  1. The OK Book by Amy Krouse Rosenthal
    This wonderful book sets the stage for the classroom community we want to create. We are unique, and it's ok to be OK at a lot of things.
  2. Ish by Peter H. Reynolds
    This imparts an important message on day one that approximations will be celebrated.
  3. The Most Magnificent Thing by Ashley Spires
    In this book, we'll discover the value of the creative process, working hard, and tweaking things when they don't turn out the way we want. 
  4. The Book with No Pictures  by B. J. Novak
    I love this book because it helps us discover right away that reading is fun and that in this classroom, we are going to laugh a lot.
  5. Each Kindness by Jacqueline Woodson
    Not only will our classroom be characterized by celebrating our uniqueness, approximations, hard work, and laughter, but our kindness to each other will be evident to all. 
  6. Little Worlds  by Géraldine Collet is just a perfect book to share as we get to know each other and bring our own little worlds into this new classroom community. 

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