Article

Books to Get You Into the Swing of School

Start the year off right by finding just the right books for your new students.

  • Grades: PreK–K, 1–2, 3–5, 6–8

Books for Grades PreK-2

Ease back-to-school anxiety and prepare kids who are entering the classroom for the first time with friendly characters and funny stories about school day experiences.

Arthur's Teacher Trouble by Marc Brown
Begin third grade with Arthur as he must face the fearsome Mr. Ratburn and compete in the school spellathon.

Bailey by Harry Bliss
Meet Bailey, a dog who surprises and charms his fellow human classmates with his irrepressible antics.

Chrysanthemum by Kevin Henkes
Follow Chrysanthemum's lead as she learns to overcome other children's teasing on the first day of kindergarten.

David Goes to School by David Shannon
Get ready for school rules with the boy who breaks all of them.

Don't Eat the Teacher by Nick Ward
Nick the shark is so excited on his first day that (oops) he takes a bite out of his teacher!

Eddie Gets Ready for School by David Milgrim
Now that Eddie can get ready all by himself, his morning routine is anything but ordinary. He wakes up with a megaphone, gets dressed in a costume, pack a watermelon snack, and runs like mad to catch the school bus.

Exclamation Mark by Amy Krouse Rosenthal
A picture book teaches lessons about punctuation and writing, and about how being different can be very exciting. Period.

First Day Jitters by Julie Danneberg
Discover that starting a new school can be scary for everyone, including teachers.

How Will I Get to School This Year? by Jerry Pallotta
Embarrassed by getting dropped off at school by mom or dad? School bus more trouble than it's worth? If you could choose, how would you get to school?

I Spy School Days by Jean Marzollo
Everyday school supplies become exciting riddles in this super-challenging puzzle book.

Junie B., First Grader (at Last!) by Barbara Park
Junie B. starts first grade, only to find that her bestest friend has left her behind, and, worse, she needs glasses!

Meet the Barkers: Morgan & Moffat Go to School by Tomie dePaola
Moffie gets all the gold stars, but Morgie is good at making friends. The twins learn to help each other during their first week of school.

Miss Bindergarten Gets Ready for Kindergarten by Joseph Slate
Experience the first morning of kindergarten with a diverse array of alphabetically ordered — and terribly nervous — animals.

Miss Nelson Is Back by Harry Allard & James Marshall
You'll think twice about skipping school after meeting Miss Viola Swamp, the dreaded substitute teacher.

Pirates Go to School by Corinne Demas
Start the school year with this funny rhyming story about the silly things pirates do when they go to school.

Timothy Goes to School by Rosemary Wells
Timothy's first day of school isn't going so well until a friend shows him how to laugh and relax.

We Share Everything! by Robert Munsch
Amanda and Jeremiah's teacher tells them to share books, blocks, and paint...but clothes?!

Wemberly Worried by Kevin Henkes
Wemberly worries about everything, especially her first day of school, but meeting a friend makes everything work out.

 

Books for Grades 3–5

Explore school's exciting side with stories about favorite characters and their adventures in and out of the classroom. Plus, learn how to face the responsibilities that go along with growing up.

Amber Brown Goes Fourth by Paula Danziger
Starting fourth grade can be tough, especially when your best friend moves and your parents have divorced. Can Amber make new friends and deal with her changing family?

Blister by Susan Richards Shreve
Meet Blister, the rough and confident alter-ego who can handle what fifth grader Alyssa Reed can't — a new home, a new school, and a family crisis.

Dear Whiskers by Ann Whitehead Nagda
Join two penpals as they overcome their differences to become friends and make their classmates smile.

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone by J.K. Rowling
Harry Potter discovers that even wizards have to go to school, but with trolls, enchanted mirrors, and three-headed dogs, Hogwarts isn't like any other school.

Princess Academy by Shannon Hale
In this Newbery Honor book, Miri goes with the other village girls to the Princess Academy to prepare for a royal marriage, and the seemingly insignificant heroine puts her talents to use to save her fellow villagers.

Ramona's World by Beverly Cleary
Ramona can't wait to begin fourth grade, but can she survive her spelling lessons? A new baby sister, Ramona's first best friend, and a schoolyard romance shake things up.

The Report Card by Andrew Clements
Sick of letter grades? So is fifth grade genius Nora Rowley, and it's time she did something about it.

The Secret School by Avi
If you think being a student is hard, try being the teacher, too. Ida Bidson, an American student in the 1920's, must do just that to finish eighth grade and realize her dreams.

Sideways Stories from Wayside School by Louis Sachar
Visit the 30-story Wayside School, where the students have contagious smiles, switched names, toes for sale, and other strange and often surprising habits.

Stuart Goes to School by Sara Pennypacker
Stuart is worried about starting third grade at a new school, but, with his magical cape in hand, he overcomes his embarrassments and makes new friends.

The View From Saturday by E. L. Konigsburg
No one knows why Mrs. Olinski picks Noah, Nadia, Ethan, and Julian to be on the school's academic bowl team, but the experience will change their lives in this Newbery Medal winning book.

Wizard's Hall by Jane Yolen
Henry Thornmallow, new student at Wizard Hall, wonders if he'll ever get his spells right. Yet when The Quilted Beast attacks the Hall, it's Henry who leads his classmates and teachers in defeating the monster. Perfect for Harry Potter fans.

 

Books for Grades 6–8

Tackle middle school challenges with these books about friendship, fitting in, and handling pressure.

A Step from Heaven by An Na
Step into the shoes of Young Ju Park, a Korean immigrant who becomes an A student despite poverty and abuse. Winner of the Printz Award.

Can You Get an F in Lunch? by Nancy Krulik
After spending the night studying the Joyce Kilmer Middle School Handbook, Jenny McAfee feels totally prepared to start sixth grade.

Drama by Raina Telgemeier
Callie loves theater. She's the set designer for the stage crew, and this year she's determined to create a set worthy of Broadway on a middle-school budget. But how can she, when she doesn't know much about carpentry, ticket sales are down, and the crew members are having trouble working together?

Football Nightmare by Matt Christopher
Keith Stedman must prove that he is a trustworthy teammate if he's going to make the school football team.

Freak the Mighty by Rodman Philbrick
Tiny, brilliant Freak and big, slow Max make an unusual but powerful pair as together they confront the violence and heartbreak of eighth grade.

Libby on Wednesday by Zilpha Keatley Snyder
As the formerly home-schooled Libby navigates her first year in a formal school, she must come to terms with the very different students in her creative writing workshop.

Makeovers by Marcia by Claudia Mills
Marcia Faitak, desperate to lose five pounds and be asked to the school dance, learns that inner beauty can be more important than outer appearances.

The Misfits by James Howe
Name calling hurts everyone, so four seventh grade misfits, the incongruously self-proclaimed Gang of Five, set out to do away with taunting forever.

Nothing But the Truth by Avi
When ninth grader Philip Malloy is suspended for humming "The Star Spangled Banner" during homeroom, he becomes the center of national media attention. A Newbery Honor book.

Shakespeare Bats Cleanup by Ron Koetge
Kevin Boland loves baseball, but he's stuck at home recuperating from mononucleosis. He finds his dad's poetry book and, through words, he begins to explore how he feels about his mom's death, girls, and, of course, baseball.

Sixth-Grade: Glommers, Norks, and Me by Lisa Papademetriou
Beware the norks (combinations of nerds and dorks) and glommers (clingy friends) as Allie Campbell redefines friendship and gains some confidence at the start of sixth grade.

Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli
Stargirl starts a new school, pet rat and ukulele in hand, and her classmates must choose whether to accept the changes she brings.

Swimming Upstream: Middle School Poems by Kristine O'Connell George
Experience a year of middle school from start to finish through this collection of humorous, realistic, and touching poems.

The Wish by Gail Carson Levine
If you had one wish, what would you wish for? Eighth grader Wilma Sturtz picks popularity, and while her newfound celebrity won't last, the resulting lessons in friendship do.

Yankee Girl by Mary Ann Rodman
Would you do the right thing if it meant giving up any chance of fitting in? Alice Ann Moxley must decide when she enrolls in a recently integrated middle school in Jackson, Mississippi.

  • Subjects:
    Language Arts
top