As the mother of a five-year-old and seven-year-old, I am beginning to feel more like a seasoned mom. Even though I know I have a lot to learn, I do feel like I have some wisdom under my cap. One thing I know for sure is that reading books out loud is a great way to prepare kids for big life changes. Reading together about kindergarten is a great way to prepare children for the new school year. Kindergarten is a big change for most children, reading books about starting school can help to familiarize them with the environment, validate their emotions, and reassure them that everything will be okay.
Books for Starting Kindergarten
Llama Llama Misses Mamaby Anna Dewdney
Different kids fear different things when they’re entering kindergarten. If separation from Mom or family is the root of their anxieties, then this sweet book should be on your bookshelf this summer. As with all Llama books, this story is heartwarmingly told through Little Lama’s eyes. This book was recommended to me by TWO of my teacher friends when my daughter was entering kindergarten, and the “Llama” series has become one of our family’s favorites.
The Kissing Hand by Ruth E. Harper
School is starting in the forest in this lovingly told modern classic, but Chester Raccoon is nervous. To ease his worries Mrs. Raccoon shares a family secret to help him on is way.
Miss Bindergarten Gets Ready for Kindergarten by Joseph Slate
This first day of school story is told in alpha sequence as the whole class gets ready–including the teacher. While rhyming, the reader will experience little bits of the day to help ease kids’ nerves as they are learn about the sequence of events. This book was recommended by my friend who is a kindergarten teacher.
Clifford Goes to Kindergartenby Norman Bridwell
Because what kid can’t relate to a giant red dog and his experience as he heads off school, right? But seriously, kids love Clifford. If they’re familiar with a character, they’re more likely to relate to the story.
Planet Kindergarten by Sue Ganz-Schmitt and Shane Prigmore
Do you have a brave little explorer or adventurer at home? They’ll love looking at kindergarten as a new world in this funny, confidence-boosting picture book.
Kindergarten, Here I Come! by D.J. Steinberg and Mark Chambers
Celebrate all the familiar milestones in this sweet story that gives children a peek into the year ahead. From first-day-of-school jitters or the hundredth-day-of-school party, kids can explore every aspect of the kindergarten experience.
The Night Before Kindergarten by Julie Durrel
‘Twas the night before kindergarten,
and as they prepared,
kids were excited,
and a little bit scared.”
Set to the cadence of the familiar Christmas classic, kids can experience all the steps of the night before and day of the first day of kindergarten in this story.
Adventure Annie Goes to Kindergarten by Toni Buzzeo
Kids will boldly barrel through the first day of school with “Adventure Annie.” Things don’t go quite as she plans, but she manages to save the day in this funny, kindergarten introduction story.
First Day Jitters by Julie Dannenberg
That sinking feeling in the pit of your stomach is a feeling we know all about as adults. It’s new and scary for most kids, and probably something they’re experiencing (or will be) as they approach the first day of kindergarten. Read along as Sarah Jane starts at a new school and deals with this feeling in this book filled with fun illustrations.
Do you have favorite books for new kindergartners? Please share them with us in the comments.