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Early Literacy

Early literacy is what children know about communication, language—verbal and non-verbal—reading and writing before they can actually read and write.

Reading Tip

One of the six early literacy skills is phonological awareness – the ability to hear and play with the smaller sounds in words. Being able to hear beginning and ending sounds, syllables and rhymes will help children sound out words when they begin to read.

Back to School: Books

Amanda Panda Quits Kindergarten by Candice Ransom
When Amanda Panda's first day of kindergarten does not go according to plan, she decides to quit and join her older brother in the second grade.

Back to School! by Nancy Rose
As summer comes to an end, Mr. Peanuts, a squirrel, helps his friend Rosie prepare her classroom and the school for the students' return.

Big Boys Cry by Jonty Howley
As they walk to his new school, a frightened Levi and his father learn that it is okay for big boys to cry.

Even Monsters Go to School by Lisa Wheeler
A grown-up monster describes in rhyming verse how monsters of all types go to school, and so must this child monster, no matter how glum about the prospect.

Even Monsters Go to School

The King of Kindergarten by Derrick Barnes
Instilled with confidence by his parents, a young boy has a great first day of kindergarten.

Lena’s Shoes are Nervous: A First-Day-of-School Dilemma by Keith Calabrese
Lena is excited about starting kindergarten but her favorite shoes are not until, with the help of her father and a very special headband, she convinces the shoes―and herself—to be brave.

Lola Goes to School by Anna McQuinn
Lola meets new friends and tries many new things on her fun but exhausting first day of school.

Milk Goes to School by Terry Border
Milk goes to school and has a hard time making friends with the other food classmates.

Monster Academy by Jane Yolen
It is the first day of school at Monster Academy, where all the monsters go, and the lesson for the day involves counting missing teeth, and Vic the vampire is sad because he still has both fangs―until Jo, a troublemaking student who whirls like a dervish but is actually a human, gives him an apple at lunch.

Pete the Kitty’s First Day of Preschool by Kim and James Dean
Pete the Kitty has his first day of preschool, where he meets the teacher, sings fun songs and paints a picture.

The Pigeon Has to Go to School by Mo Willems
The pigeon must go to school, but frets about math, learning the alphabet, heavy backpacks and what the teacher and other birds will think of him.

School Day by Billy Steers
Betty the school bus is upset over making mistakes on her very first day, but Tractor Mac and the farm animals provide tips and encourage her to practice and try again.

Unicorn is Maybe Not So Great by Bob Shea
Concerned about losing friends during the first week of school, Unicorn upgrades his fabulousness.

 

 

Back to School: Songs and Rhymes

It’s Cool to Go to School
(Tune: “A Hunting We Will Go”)
I’m learning every day.
I’m learning every day.
It’s oh so cool to go to school! (give two thumbs up)
I’m learning every day.

 

I’m learning about letters.
I’m learning about letters.
That’s what I need so I can read! (pretend to open and read a book)
I’m learning about letters.

 

I’m learning about numbers.
I’m learning about numbers.
Without a doubt then I can count! (count on fingers)
I’m learning about numbers.

 

I’m learning about numbers.
I’m learning about numbers.
Curves and lines suit me just fine! (‘write’ letter in the air)
I’m learning about numbers.

 

I’m learning to make friends.
I’m learning to make friends.
I want to play with you today! (hug a friend)
I’m learning to make friends.

 

Welcome to Preschool
(Tune: “Up On the Housetop”)
We made some friends today, today.
We had lots of fun, I’d say.
Blocks, puzzles and other games to play.
Welcome to preschool. Hooray! Hooray!

 

School Song
(Tune: “Polly Wolly Doodle All the Day”)
Oh, I go to school to learn and play.
Singing polly wolly doodle all the day!
Oh, I go to school to learn and play,
Singing polly wolly doodle all the day!

 

Fare thee well. Fare thee well.
Fare thee well, dear Mom (Dad) today!
For I go to school to learn and play,
Singing polly wolly doodle all the day!

 

Good Morning
(Tune: “Happy Birthday to You”)
Good morning to you.
Good morning to you.
Good morning everyone!
Good morning to you.

 

School Bus
I ride the school bus to my school.
I follow every school bus rule.
I sit down quietly in my seat.
And never bring food on to eat.
The bus driver says, “C’mon let’s go!”
I can’t wait to get to school, you know!

 

This is the Way
(Tune: “Mulberry Bush”)
This is the way we sit in a circle,
Sit in a circle, sit in a circle.
This is the way we sit in a circle,
Here at our school.

 

Additional verses:
We line up…
Sit in our chairs…
Raise our hands…
Paint a picture…
Eat our lunch…
Or any other verses about routine activities.

 

What Did You Do in Preschool?
(Tune: “Johnny Works With One Hammer”)
Today I (played) with new friends,
New friends, new friends.
Today I (played) with new friends,
We had lots of fun!

 

Substitute “played” with additional activities:

Built
Drew
Jumped
Learned
Read

 

B-O-O-K-S Song
(Tune: “B-I-N-G-O”)
There was a class that loved to read,
And books were what they read, oh!
B-O-O-K-S, B-O-O-K-S, B-O-O-K-S,
And books were what they read, oh!

 

Pick Up Toys
(Tune: “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star”)
Pick up, pick up, pick up toys,
Every little girl and boy.
Look around and you will see,
All the things that shouldn’t be.
Pick up, pick up, pick up toys,
Every little girl and boy.

 

Off to School We Go
(Tune: “A Hunting We Will Go”)
Off to school we go,
Oh, it’s off to school we go.
We’ll take our lunch and ride the bus,
With everyone we know.
 

Off to school we go,
Oh, it’s off to school we go.
We’ll learn our ABC’s and more,
With everyone we know.

 
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