This morning I had my "back to school" preschool story time. Granted school was already two weeks in session, but this was when I finally got it organized and ready to go !
The first book that I read was The Pout-Pout Fish Goes to School by Deborah Diesen. The main character in this book is a young fish, Mr. Fish, who is experiencing his first day at school. Unfortunately for him, he keeps going to the classes for the older and more experienced fish by mistake. Try as he might, he cannot print his name, make a rhombus, or do long division. During each of his experiences trying to accomplish something he "flub-flub frowned making blub-blub bubbles then he plopped down his pencil and he counted off his troubles: Trouble One: I'm not smart! Trouble Two: I'll never get it! Trouble Three: I don't belong so Trouble Four: Forget It!" The kids listened patiently to Mr. Fish's litany of woes once, but not the second time; so I didn't read them throughout the rest of the story.
The story finishes with a positive "I can do it" attitude when Mr. Fish's teacher, Miss Hewitt, tells him "Don't you fret! You don't have to know things you haven't learned yet!" She reassures him by saying "You're a fish who is smart. With practice you will get it. Young fish, you belong-don't you ever forget it!"
The story ends with Mr. Fish and his classmates successfully learning new things! "The class got to work, and Miss Hewitt helped them through it. They listened, then they tried ...... and everyone could do it"!
The next book that I read was If You Take a Mouse to School by Laura Numeroff. This charming story is about a mouse who keeps wanting and asking for things and constantly getting into trouble. For example, "when you give your lunchbox, he'll want a sandwich and a snack for later. Then he'll need a notebook and some pencils." I had high hopes for this story, but this was the story that the children seemed to be the least interested in.
The last book that I read was Dinosaur vs. School by Bob Shea. The kids loved this book! I think it was their favorite story! In this story, Dinosaur faces a number of new challenges, such as: meeting new friends!; dressing up!; glitter, glue, and googly eyes!; monkey snacks!; and making music! But when Dinosaur and his friends clean up, everybody wins! The kids enjoyed roaring along with Dinosaur as he faces each challenge. So much so that we had to stop roaring because we weren't using our "inside roars"! But in spite of that, they still really enjoyed the story!
One on One Read Alouds
I ordered both of these books from other libraries with the intention of using them for this story time. But when I received and read them, I realized that the were too long for story time. That said, they are wonderful books for a parent to read aloud to a child!
The book, Otter Goes to School by Sam Garton, features an otter who decides to be a teacher and she enrolls her stuffed animal companions, Giraffe, Pig, and Teddy in a school. Otter teaches math and Giraffe excels at math! Giraffe gets lots of gold stars. Otter teaches music and Pig has a beautiful singing voice! Pig gets lots of gold stars. But Teddy hasn't excelled at anything! He told Otter that, "he didn't like school. The other students were better than him at everything." Teddy is heartbroken. She waits for Otter Keeper (the man who owns all of these stuffed animals) to get home. Otter Keeper tells Otter that, "everyone is good at something, and that you just need to find out what that something is." Otter decides to have an art lesson and Teddy draws a picture that "was the best picture ever!"
Rosie Goes to Preschool by Karen Katz is a wonderful book about a preschooler named Rosie who provides instructions and reassurance to the reader as she takes the reader through a typical preschool day. This is a wonderful book for a child who is reluctant to start preschool! Rosie also provides helpful tips throughout the book such as: "Don't forget to raise your hand if you want to talk".