Summer has passed and it’s time for class. There are plenty of terrific books that are perfect for the first day of school. There are stories about everything from first-day jitters to socializing with classmates. We’ve included lots of books to hopefully make the transition a little easier and calm those first day jitters. And for the seasoned pro, we’ve included some school stories that are just for fun!
New School Stories
The Best Seat in Kindergarten by Katharine Kenah, illus. by Abby Carter
This beginning reader is a great introduction for those who are excited, yet nervous about starting school.
Big Shark, Little Shark Go to School by Anna Membrino, illus. by Tim Budgen
Big Shark and Little Shark are opposite in every way. Little Shark is excited for the start of school, but Big Shark doesn’t want to get out of bed. Will they be late on their first day of school?
Brown Bear Starts School by Sue Tarsky, illus. by Marina Aizen
Brown Bear overcomes his nervousness and makes friends in the process. The illustrations are charming and have the feel of children’s artwork.
Clothesline Clues to the First Day of School by Kathryn Heling and Deborah Hembrook, illus. by Andy Robert Davies
Who wears what on the first day of school? Catchy rhymes as well as clothing and accessories hanging on a clothesline provide clues as to what friendly faces will be encountered on the first day of school, from custodian to teacher to crossing guard.
Hannah Sparkles: Hooray for the First Day of School! by Robin Mellom, illus. by Vanessa Brantley-Newton
Hannah is about to begin first grade where she has a little trouble connecting with her new classmates. Her best friend Sunny encourages her to watch and listen which makes all the difference.
The King of Kindergarten by Derrick Barnes, illus. by Vanessa Brantley-Newton
A confident little boy has a great first day of school! This upbeat story is free of those first day jitters.
Lola Goes to School by Anna McQuinn, illus. by Rosalind Beardshaw
It’s Lola’s first day of preschool and she couldn’t be more ready. She meets new friends and tries new things on her fun but exhausting first day!
My First Day of School by Alyssa Satin Capucilli, photographs by Jill Wachter
Beginning readers can learn what to expect on the first day of school.
Nugget & Fang Go to School by Tammi Sauer, illus. by Michael Slack
Another first day of school story about a shark who attends Mini Minnows Elementary with his best friend who happens to be a minnow. The illustrations are bright and colorful and perfect for this humorous story.
Pete the Kitty’s First Day of Preschool by Kimberly & James Dean
In this board book, Pete the Kitty – a preschool spin-off of Pete the Cat – gets ready for his first day of school, groovy backpack and all!
The Pigeon Has to Go to School! by Mo Willems
It’s time for Pigeon to go to school, but he has no intention of doing so. The ending is perfect and eases the way for those children who are also anxious about starting school.
School of Fish by Jane Yolen, illus. by Mike Moran
A little fish goes through all the emotions associated with the first day of school. Perfect for beginning readers.
Sorry, Grown-Ups, You Can’t Go to School! by Christina Geist, illus. by Tim Bowers
In this picture book the roles are reversed and it’s the parents and grandparents who are eager to go to school … the kids, not so much. It’s the perfect book to share with those who are reluctant or nervous about going to school.
Take Your Pet to School Day by Linda Ashman, illus. by Suzanne Kaufman
Ashman is known for her fun, rhyming picture books. Her bouncy verses are accompanied by Kaufman’s colorful and lively illustrations. Both provide lots for the reader to absorb as chaos ensues on pet day at school.
When Pencil Met Eraser by Karen Kilpatrick and Luis O. Ramos, Jr., illus. by German Blanco
This is the clever story of how Pencil and Eraser came to be inseparable, best friends.
Your First Day of Circus School by Tara Lazar, illus. by Melissa Crowton
In this story, an older brother helps his younger sibling learn the ropes on this first day of circus school. Perfect for any “first day” jitters.